the thrive portrait project


In October 2014, I decided to take a month-long sabbatical from writing my blog.  At the time, I was 47 years old, and more than any other time in my adult life, I felt like I was entering a new stage:  a time when things were going great, but I also felt ready for new challenges, new adventures.  A time of flourishing.  A time of thriving.

During that sabbatical, I decided to look for blogs and other personal writings authored by people who were similarly situated, and feeling the same way I was feeling.  Sadly, I found very few.  It turns out there's not a whole lot out there that represents what I'm experiencing -- that this isn't a time of disappearing, but more one fueled by the feeling captured by the indomitable Maya Angelou, who said that her mission in life isn't merely to survive, but "to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humour and some style."

And so, I decided to embark upon a new photography project:  women who are over the age of 40, and who rage against the idea that they should fade -- who are, in fact, living their lives so "out loud," they're practically roaring.  In the process of photographing them with my Hasselblad film camera (a timeless piece of machinery, if ever there was one), I asked them to describe for me what it means to them to thrive.

These are their beautiful spirits, and their beautiful stories.

what does "thrive" mean to you?