Since she was born I have always photographed Lila. At first and foremost because she is my daughter and I want to record how she changes and grows up. Candid and precious moments. With time, I have asked her to pose for me, which she usually reluctantly does. Like most teenage girls she is much more into selfies and lacks the patience posing requires. Even if our photo sessions may bring up frustration on both sides, I hope she will appreciate these pictures when she is older and recognise the love and admiration I instil in each of them.
When she turned twelve, I noticed subtle but profound changes in her. Physical ones: hair, breasts and blood appeared, limbs grew longer, hips got rounder. My baby’s body was slowly turning into a woman’s. And emotional ones: from extraverted and outspoken in public she would sometimes become introverted and shy. Mood swings, doubt, anger and self-depreciation would affect her. While at the same time demonstrating strong will and assertiveness. She would be happy, playful and carefree. But also, compassionate, caring, concerned and even worried. Brutal emotions in a raw body.
In order to cope as a mother, the photographer in me tried to turn these changes into pictures. Pairing them with natural elements helps me remember that these permanent changes are normal and beautiful, and that they should only be embraced.
Lila is now thirteen, still growing, still changing. She will forever remain my favourite model, together with her younger sister.