Every time I look at this picture, I feel like I am looking at a delicate porcelain doll. Sonya has the sweetest little smile and the mannerisms of a sweet little lamb. When you are this age, you’re just starting to figure out who you are. You’re not quite a child, but you’re not a teenager either. You’re in between. Or as my mother would say, you’re a tween.
As Sonya sat before me in her black and white zebra striped dress, I knew it was especially important that her beauty came forward in this portrait. You see, this is also one of the critical times in a girl’s life where her opinion of herself is being formed. This is the time when my mission needs to be front and center: that in the face of society and it’s definition of beauty, I can photograph someone and show them a beauty that is totally unmatched because it is completely and uniquely their own.
When Sonya finally got to see her photographs, she exclaimed,“I look like a doll,” as a smile slowly spread across her lips. And in that moment, I would like to think I accomplished what I set out to do the moment I released the shutter. I captured her, and therefore, I captured her soul.
Location: Wiscasset, Maine.