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Love, Loss, and Lomography: A Story of Healing Through Analogue Art

Let me say that this is an extremely personal story and I am not seeking your sympathy, nor your shock. My life ended and began again on March 28, 2010. That was the day I lost the love of my life, my partner, my lover and my best friend, Laurie Jensen. I can’t actually get into the details, as the Coroner’s report is still pending.

My story is not particularly unique, loss happens to all of us at some point in our lives. I guess the story is always in how we deal with it. I have submersed myself in my art, and between that and the kindness of the Lomography community have helped me to go on.

Laurie and I met at an art show where we were both exhibiting. She became my biggest fan and supporter. Art was central to our lives and I am going to continue the path we were on. Our plan had been to retire early and spend our time traveling, collaborating and creating art. Sadly, our only completed collaboration is the self-portrait of Laurie (above, shot with a Holga 120N). She was doing some intense personal work at the time and asked me to take some pictures to paint from. I have included a number of the studio shots I took for the project as well as the collage of shots she settled on to start her painting.

Suddenly, I was very much alone and lost. It took me some time to pick up a camera again, and longer than that before I was truly comfortable with the idea of shooting, but it has became therapy for me. I have become far more active on the Lomography site in the last year, as I want people to see my work. And you have. As a community you have lifted my spirits by visiting my home and liking what you see there and inviting me to see the world through your eyes in all of your wonderful individual homes. You have shared tips and inspiration with me. I hope I have given back in kind. I think Laurie would be truly proud of much of the work I have done. I have a deeply personal connection with each frame I shoot.

My photography has sustained me this far, and I am now starting to actually work towards some more integrated art projects. One that you will be seeing over the next year is the occasional collaboration with Laurie. We can’t work together, but I can use some of the beautiful fabric she created (she was a weaver as well as a painter and musician) to create doubles. I’ll try to make sure that each one is special on its own merit and not just for the sentimental value to me.

Advice? Tell someone you love them. Be kind to others, friends and strangers. Take a little time each day to consider how lucky you are. Buy and shoot film. And most important of all, have fun and cherish every day as they are each precious.

written by troch

17 comments

  1. sthomas68

    sthomas68

    Very sorry to hear of your loss. Your creativity shows with each new album you post. Glad you have not given up!

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  2. clickiemcpete

    clickiemcpete

    That was very moving. Thanks for sharing your story and your beautiful images with us.

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  3. yarglags

    yarglags

    Thanks for sharing such a personal story. I love your images. I'm seeing a lot more light in them lately. I hope you do too.

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  4. peewpeewbangwatcha

    peewpeewbangwatcha

    Im sorry for your loss.. Thats heart breaking. But im glad your still shooting and im glad it helps.

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  5. antibiotyx

    antibiotyx

    touching piece and compelling portraits, troch.

    i'm so sorry for your loss. life is really short and everyone should treasure every second of it. glad to know lomography has helped you to go on. :)

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  6. shinysilverdragon

    shinysilverdragon

    You have shared a beautiful and personal experince, and I am glad to take inspiration from you. I too lost a partner just over a year ago, and I know something of your pain, but grief is different for everyone, and you are very brave to share your heart in this way. I admire you for continuing the art and life you shared with Laurie, and I hope you continue to find joy in the memories you shared. Your images are very beautiful and I look forward to your future projects :)
    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  7. pomps

    pomps

    what it is said here is really moving. all the photos shown have an incredible beauty but also your advice is now kept in my heart. You always have Art! :)

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  8. russheath

    russheath

    Thank you for sharing this, troch. The portraits are excellent, as is the message and its simplicity. I hope that writing it gives you some peace.

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  9. earlybird09

    earlybird09

    that was one of the most beautiful things i have read in the this last few days. very touching and inspirational. i love those portraits, really beautiful. it is hard - sometimes even impossible - to recover from the lost of a person, especially if you love her so much. i had a similar experience, and until this day i still have a hard time to recover. i am so sorry about your lost. you were so brave for writting this, and i sincerely hope that you find happiness and joy in your life again.
    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  10. kdstevens

    kdstevens

    Beautiful, Troch! I hope you know just how well loved you are in this community.

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  11. pietrone

    pietrone

    my heart is with you Troch!! I wish all the best as you deserve!!!

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  12. superlighter

    superlighter

    Troch, thanks for your precious advices and to share with us this so sorrowful piece of your life. the best way that we have to maintain the memory of loved ones is to continue our work with even greater strength and passion, a hug. Aurelio

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  13. mafiosa

    mafiosa

    Thanks for sharing this story with us. It must have been hard for you to put your feelings into words, and then broadcast them to us. You are an amazing artist and I'm glad you are continuing with your art. Keep the beautiful photos coming.

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  14. stouf

    stouf

    So beautiful and so brave. Photography also helped me reconstruct myself.

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  15. ninkynonk

    ninkynonk

    I think every lomographer who has read this will be thinking of you and Laurie. I certainly will be. Keep up the great work.

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  16. kylethefrench

    kylethefrench

    this is an absolutely fantastic tribute to life and love and art and all that is wonderful and all that is sad. Big ups and hugs.

    almost 3 years ago · report as spam
  17. maarow

    maarow

    Your story and your images are equally powerful. Your determination to keep making art is a beautiful tribute to someone you love. I'm very happy and fortunate to be part of this community with you, even in some small way.

    over 2 years ago · report as spam

Read this article in another language

This is the original article written in: English. It is also available in: Português & Italiano.