If you’ve ever been to an Irish wake, you know that it’s a mixture of laughing, story telling and bouts of crying with a lot of food, drinks and random people in and out of the house. It’s comforting but exhausting.
With this composition I was trying to conjure the moments after the guests leave, when things are quiet and reality is starting to sink in, when you are too worn out and shell-shocked to laugh or cry, or even talk. The people still around after are usually your closest family, so you can communicate by simple eye contact.
In the photo Meg is looking right into the lens, neither shying away nor playing to the camera. It could be an act of courage or defiance... or maybe just a way to make a connection during a lonely moment.
My sister has this kind of mysterious Mona Lisa face that’s often impossible to read – her delicate features can harden into an impenetrable poker face; she is confident and strong but still gives the impression of holding something back to protect herself. I imagine there are a million things churning behind those eyes.