My Body as Canvas: Exploring my experience with chemotherapy through makeup. 

Today I chose to do a deer skull because I’ve been thinking about growth and decay, the way one feeds into another and the bittersweet beauty found in sickness and death. The forest and field in the pictures are located behind my house. These are the places where I walk my dogs, have conversations with my mother and clear my head. I think if you were to walk through a particular cavern in my heart you’d find yourself in this place, this contained and perpetually disappearing farmland and wilderness.

I embrace this part of my life as I embrace the month of November: even as the cold begins to creep into our bones and the leaves fall from the branches, it pushes us closer, toward warmth and togetherness. When we begin to understand mortality, we begin to experience life more richly and in ways we hadn’t previously considered. I consider myself an aesthete. Beauty is the light through which life is illuminated to me. I will continue to create, to find beauty in this particular part of my life, because to ignore it would be to waste an experience, sad as it may be, that has taught me new ways to navigate my existence.

Photo Credit: Patrick Barnes