I’m already so impressed with myself for doing three consecutive days of February Photo Fest. I know that may not sound like much of an achievement, but for someone who just hosted, and did not complete, a 31 day writing challenge, I’m picking this low hanging fruit and I’m gonna eat it til the juice runs off my elbows.

It feels good to be working so hard on this blog and in the freelance world. It’s not an absolute deluge of opportunities, but they are coming in consistently and it feels good to be at a place where my week legitimately needs planning to get done what needs doing. I don’t miss the corporate life, and I wouldn’t trade my sunny bedroom-office for all the boardrooms and skyscrapers in the world.

As much as I’m grateful for the work, a big part of why I love projects like February Photo Fest is that it forces me to slow down and see things as they are. I struggle to balance work and play; I do one, or the other, but there is rarely a happy medium. Partly, I’m just super passionate, but partly I’m just stubborn too. If I don’t love something why do it? And if I’m also not already good at it? Pfffft. No thanks.

I have written here before about the challenges I have with being present and it’s not that I lack focus or attention span, I just struggle to fully engage. Photography forces me to drive out external distractions and look at what the lens sees. That is such a freeing place to be, and once I’m there, I get to try things, to let my imagination run a bit; adjust the shot, the lighting, a million tiny decisions. And when the feather-light moment of clarity crystalizes and that warm sparkle happens behind my eyes and something inside me says yes! … that’s when I hit the shutter.

There’s no headtrip more cosmic and fantastical than making art.

It’s amazing what you notice when you slow down. Take this photo of a glass bottle. It was bought at Ikea, I think, two years (three?) ago. It was inexpensive, and it’s become a favourite that I like to keep on my desk to fill my water glass with. I really enjoy tactile things in my hands. I have some sensory issues with fabrics and things, but I’m forever seeking texture both for visual variety and sensation.  I find this bottle very sensual to use because of the decorative, embossed band – what can I say, I’m a sucker gently textured glass – but not until today, playing eye-spy through the camera, did I notice that it looks a lot like an infinite loop of vulvas decorated with a band of daisies above and below. It’s a veritable fairy ring of cunts. Now, as a vulva-having, bisexual sex blogger feminist flowerchild, that’s just about the happiest little detail I have discovered in awhile.



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Violet Fawkes

Violet Fawkes (she/her) is a freelance writer and sex blogger focusing on pleasure education, erotic fiction, and the intersection of identity, kink and mental health.