In the spring, I accompanied my daughter’s kindergarten class to the MACM, and was lucky enough to see Sophie Calle’s exhibition Pour la dernière et pour la première fois (For the Last and First Time). While a group of 5-6 year olds don’t leave much time for savouring, I found it to be one of the most moving exhibitions I had ever seen. It was Voir la mer that inspired the series I am sharing with you today.
Up until this past July, neither of my girls had any memory of the ocean. Our last beach vacation had been when my older daughter was one, and I was pregnant with my youngest, so knew I wanted to capture their experience. We had just driven two days, had dropped off our bags at our condo, and immediately walked back out, down the walkway, a few steps to the beach. What I did not realize was how difficult it would be to capture this, these first moments, through tears and through chest-bursting joy.
What I will remember:
- The way our girls’ faces changed at their first ocean view
- Their unbelievable squeals of delight upon feeling the warm ocean water
- Eloïse, momentarily pausing amidst the excitement, and asking me to remind her, how many days would we be here, again?
- How Aurelia paused and turned for a final look before going back for supper
- Ben’s face, witnessing it all
I may not be in these images but I am in these photographs. You can find me, just outside the frame, in the brief instants I chose to freeze in time.
Interested in having family documentarian tell your family’s story? Elisa Elliot is a Montreal lifestyle and documentary family photographer serving the Montreal, Montreal’s South Shore, including St. Lambert, Longueuil, Brossard and surrounding area. She specializes in family photography that captures the real and honest moments of family life. Feel free to contact her here for more information.