Calgary Family Photographer (Photo by Dana Pugh) I have spent the day editing while my kids are in summer camp.

The last year has seen me get busier than I have ever been. Truthfully, I slowed down for a couple of years there while I dealt with my own life a bit and then, all of a sudden, I felt ready to be busy again. When I realized that, the universe saw fit to send me a tonne of work. Funny how life works out like that.

I have been shooting for almost 8 years. This fall, I will celebrate my 7th year in business. I know from past experience that sometimes I am more comfortable in my photography than other times. That might not make sense to you, but it makes such total sense to me. The beautiful thing that has happened recently is that I have reached a place of peace about my work. It's completely freeing actually. I can see myself becoming unapologetic about it. Showing the work that is most it or hate it, but I know that it comes from a place of truth. And I am a truth seeker.

Part of this self reflection comes from a conversation that I had with Jack recently(my almost 12 year old son--in case you didn't know). He talked about the mainstream and how he wasn't part of it...not that there is anything wrong with the mainstream just that, he feels like, it is a bunch of people who aren't comfortable with embracing the things that they love so they embrace what everyone else around them loves. To help them fit in. To belong.  I see this a lot in the photography industry. A sort of homogenization and an almost celebration of said homogenization. There used to be a time when I could look at an image and tell you who took it. That is getting harder and harder to do as people's work becomes more and more similar. I feel like instead of listening to the calls of their souls, people have begun listening to the crowds applauding this sameness. I don't blame them for wanting to fit in...for wanting to belong. I have been there. But, I am not there anymore.

I told some friends today that I felt like becoming an island...that I was going off by myself now. To do the real work. That's where I am going. And, truthfully, it makes me so excited.

~ Dana