Hey everyone - "Happy Monday"
I can hear your moans and groans and I am sorry (and maybe a little #sorry_not_sorry) but I am feeling a little high on life and love and am so proud of someone who is so brave and strong and is just amazing, and I wanted to share some of this with you all!
If my opening sentence has put you off already, I wont be offended if you log off and go back to watching EastEnders (maybe a little late for that now) - and to those who want to read on - until the next sentence anyway - to see what I am waffling on about - grab yourself a brew, sit comfortably and I shall begin.
In April 2017 I met the Weldon family; I had read an article about Mick's battle with cancer - and having lost my own Dad to the awful disease in 2008, I wanted to do something nice for Mick and Emma and their girls, so offered them a slot at a day of Family shoots I was running at Wimpole Hall. So they accepted my offer and came to Wimpole - I remember the day so well, it was gorgeous - a blue cloudless sky day and warm and we spent about an hour together. And boy did we live every second of that hour; we laughed - full on belly hurting, eyes watering laughs - from the second we met until the minute they left - when I had a different kind of water in my eyes!
Our photographs from that day are a reflection of true family unity, and utter comedy from messing about and just living for the moment! It was a brilliant hour, in a lovely day and though I remember every single person, couple and family I ever photograph, some people have a knack of creeping into the empty spaces in your heart that you didn't know existed and take up squatters rights there - well, that's exactly what the Weldon's did to my old heart. They found a big old wedge in the Murphy heart and claimed it for their own - I am sure that Mick will be laughing at the fact that I just referred to him and his gorgeous girls as squatters!
Where am I going with this blog? I hear you ask, well bear with me ok ....
Mick sadly lost his battle with cancer on the 30 Sept 2018 and though I had only had the pleasure of his company for an hour - I know that my life, my outlook on life and the sense of humanity I now feel towards other people - was made all the richer and stronger for that time in his company. Its amazing how you don't have to know a person for very long for them to have a massive impact on your life - this is what "Scouser" and his girls did to me!
I was touched beyond words when Emma contacted me and asked me to attend Mick's funeral and I couldn't hold back the tears to see photographs that we had created together very much present in those final moments we had with him.
Is there any greater compliment to a photographer than this?
Charlie told her Mum, Emma, that as soon as I saw the photograph of the four of them that was placed on top of Mick's coffin - I would cry - well she wasn't wrong! The girl knows me well!
The months following Mick's passing have been few and I can only imagine how dark the dark days have been for Emma and Charlie and Becca - I can remember what the first few months were like for me after losing my Dad, which is exactly why, I just had to blog about the fact that my heart is as high as a kite right now for Charlie .... in the hard times, the smallest of victories need to be celebrated and quite frankly, yelled about from the roof tops, and when there are big victories the adopted photographer friend blogs the life out of it!!!
Today Charlie has shared with me that she is back in the saddle and pursuing her theatrical dreams and is now being represented by the amazing NexGen Talent Agency of London.
THIS IS MASSIVE!
After everything that Charlie and her family have been through, I literally could not be any prouder of her if I tried. Her beautiful face - in the form of the head shots we took together last year - can now been seen on this highly respected Talent Agency website and if there is one person who is cheering her on, shouting from every roof top and wishing her every single snippet of good luck in the whole wide world - its me.
People could be forgiven for thinking that, as a photographer, we / I, are just a transitory moment in someone's life - there one minute to take the photographs and then gone the next. As I am sure the Weldon ladies will testify - this isn't my style!
This blog wasn't written to highlight that some of my images are now on a London Talent Agency website - though this is amazing in its own right and I am so grateful that Charlie asked me to do these for her and gave me this awesome opportunity - no, this blog was written, from the part of my heart that forever belongs to "Scouser and his girls" and to give a huge shout out whoop whoop high five to an incredible lady who I know is going to take the world of performing arts by storm and kick its arse!
If you've stayed with me and have read this blog to the end, thank you - that means a lot to me and I am sure Charlie will be touched that you took the time to share a little of her story! Watch this space!