Have I ever told you the story of how Aaron and I started dating? It’s lengthy and I won’t get into the details here, but at one point when I was playing hard to get– responding to texts in one word answers and the like– Aaron offered me a ride to LAX and to borrow his new camera for my upcoming trip to Oregon. The camera was intriguing, but a ride to LAX was solid gold in the pre-Uber summer of 2008. I spent the day working, running around from showroom to showroom and studio department to studio department returning clothes. I was running super behind that day, but got a quick tutorial on the way to the airport on how to use the camera. (Not fully appreciating at the time how much said camera cost or how nervous it must have made my type A husband to relinquish it into the hands of a true novice.) When I returned we spent an evening on the couch as he showed me how to download the photos onto my computer and gave me tips on what I had shot. That was the beginning of our adventures in photography. After that we would spend weekends at the Getty, each of us with a camera, shooting into similar directions and getting wildly different results. He had a natural eye. It’s around this time that I learned about white space. White space is any section of a photo or graphic that is unused– it’s the empty space around an object. By not filling the entire frame or painting, a photographer or artist or graphic designer actually gives more weight and emphasis to what is featured in the frame. It’s the white space. Space that is intentionally left empty. Our team spent a couple of hours at the Blanton last week which had me thinking about white space, but not just the white space left on canvas….
…rather the white space I leave in my day to day schedule, in my google calendar, in my life. Is every hour spoken for? Are only the quantifiable things prioritized? Or is there enough space left in my days to emphasize what really matters?
Busy is a word that is so commonplace and overly used that I try to avoid it, but life is undoubtedly full as a mom of two, a wife, a small business owner, a sister, a daughter, and a friend. That’s a lot of hats to wear well. What does the white space leave room for? It leaves room for impromptu afternoons scootering at the park or last minute trips to meet friends for ice cream. It leaves room for movie nights on the couch and quiet moments rocking a baby where your mind can wander not scroll through ideas for upcoming shoots. It leaves room for making messes in the kitchen with tiny hands that result in your best batch of pumpkin bread yet. Somehow that empty, negative, white space equals a life that feels full, full, full… in the best possible way. And what does white space have to do with getting dressed? Everything. It’s the reason why a long sleeved mini dress feels so chic or why I love this turtleneck with this denim skirt. It’s the white space. The balance.
Photography by Katie Jameson