I can think of few experiences that changed my life as profoundly as my first child’s birth. With my newborn’s arrival, my identity, social status, and self-concept forever changed. During the months leading up to his birth, I busily feathered my nest. In that process, my ideals, my hopes, and my naïve assumptions were invested in and revealed by the material objects I assembled for him: the used crib I lovingly refinished, the bedding I sewed, the toys I bought, and the books I shelved.
Through portraits situated in the spaces prepared for children, On the Nest explores this transitional moment and seeks to discover the range of approaches expectant parents bring to the act of nurturing a new generation.
I am equally interested in the transition to life without children as I draw closer to presiding over an empty nest. I am curious about how parents experience this new life stage—whether the empty nest is greeted with relief, sadness, joy, or anxiety. What becomes of the spaces once occupied by children—are children’s rooms preserved as a shrine or reclaimed for new uses? Do totems of their childhood remain or has their presence vanished without leaving a trace? These spaces, too, offer clues about life experience, our sense of the past, and expectations for the future.
Through this portrait series I am exploring moments of profound change, and in doing so, I hope to gain a nuanced understanding of what it means to create a new life.
"Grilled Chicken" from In the Kitchen
"Lip Gloss" from In the Kitchen
"Corn Dogs and Milk" from In the Kitchen
"Cherry Coke" from In the Kitchen
"Hanging Out" from In the Kitchen
"Inspection" from In the Kitchen
"Built Tough" from Soccer Mom
"Colin Dean" from Soccer Mom
"R.I.P." from Soccer Mom
"Spectators, U14 Girls" from Soccer Mom
"No Pets on Fields" from Soccer Mom
"The Smell of Chicken" from Sanctioned Sex
"Beautiful Women, Smell Their Scent" from Sanctioned Sex
"Everybody Likes a Happy Girl" from Sanctioned Sex
"No Hassle Girls" from Sanctioned Sex
"Very Clean, Nice Staff" from Sanctioned Sex
"Desiree and Karen, 68 days" from On the Nest
"Kristin and Ryan, 18 days" from On the Nest
"Alejandra and Mark, 12 days" from On the Nest
"Vicki and Klaus, 21 days" from On the Nest
"Heidi and Erik, 30 days" from On the Nest
"Jason and Kevin, 7 days" from On the Nest
Flier for "On the Nest" series participation
From "in the Kitchen" series