Posted on September 7, 2016
Wild Self – of Scars, Skies, and Water
“The doors to the world of the wild Self are few but precious. If you have a deep scar, that is a door, if you have an old, old story, that is a door. If you love the sky and the water so much you almost cannot bear it, that is a door. If you yearn for a deeper life, a full life, a sane life, that is a door.”
— Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Ph.D (Women Who Run With the Wolves)
I am so honoured to have photographed such a stunningly gorgeous, honest, vulnerable and powerful wild woman! Most of us struggle with body image, I know I do. What is it like as we grow older, post child rearing, as the years go by, still keenly aware of emotional or physical injuries lodged deep in our skin, our bones, our hearts? It is hard to stand naked in front of ourselves and shout ‘Yes!’ to the skies, Yes, to ourselves. Yes to our beautiful bodies, pain and all, age and experience and all. It is hard, isn’t it? And yet, if we go there, if we walk tentatively down our own steep, crumbling banks, noticing how life persists in clinging, in growing, in reaching, down towards the cool pool within, where the gentle sun warms….If we gingerly approach that edge…we can find that place of release, of self-acceptance, and of profound beauty.
“I was taught from a very young age that my body was not my own. Told in subtle and not so subtle ways, by both my parents… by a trusted elderly neighbor… and by society… that this body I was born into was for a man’s pleasure. And so the abuse began.
I went into this photo shoot with the intention of facing some of my darkest places and dislodging the stuck parts inside. I loved the idea of entering the water to wash away some of these old stories…. These outdated thought patterns that kept me held in abuse and self- hatred.
And now, as I look at these beautiful photographs and observe the effects that two years without almost any yoga has done to my body…. I try my best to breathe through my inner self critic.
I feel inspired… to let go of the self-hatred and love my body back into the shape I feel more comfortable with.
Most important of all… I choose to reclaim my birthright… This body… This body is my own.
Thank you, again for the opportunity you have given me.”
Wild Woman at the lake ~ exploring her edges of vulnerability
the cool waters at the centre of our body
can we find that forgiving patient self love here at the lake, the trees cling to steep banks,
roots exposed, hard rock and soft earth crumble
trees fall, all feeds and is fed, death, life, transition
Injury and healing
earth body mirrors our body
as we learn to love and cherish our core
we become stronger
in awe, Belinda
#wildwomanproject #rewildingphotography #wildwander #wildself #scarsskiesandwater #deepscar #beautifulbodyproject #bodylove #selflove #thatisadoor #clarissapinkolaestes #shiningfromtheinsideout
Posted on August 12, 2016
” To love my body fiercely is truly revolutionary.”
“oh, my breats are uneven! Mama breats!” Even when her youngest daughter is not here beside her, that bond of breast-feeding is present in the body of mama Omi Grace as she embraces her own power feet washed by the river, our great earth mama’s breast, nursing us with the waters of life; arms stretching high like the Cedar trees to the sky, Goddess rising! You are so beautiful Omi.
#awildwomanproject #wildwomanproject #rewildingphotography #goddessrising #lovemybodyfeircely
Posted on August 7, 2016
Beautiful, Wild, Searching Naomi
“All of us are wild deep within.” A Wild Woman Project
What can I say about you, sweet Naomi? Meeting you changed my life. You ‘saw’ me. you ‘heard’ me, you ‘knew’ me.
You witnessed, named and honoured my deep sharing and vulnerability. You thanked me for my tears, and cried with me at our first gathering together, and in so doing cracked open a space in my judgement:- haha, I thought you were perfect, young, beautiful, partnered, happy. Our meeting, the time, conversations, and visioning we’ve done since has contributed so much to my understanding of A Beautiful Mama Project and A Wild Woman Project.
Walking down to the river to pray, play, cry and work through shame, fears, lost dreams, deep desires, and new hopes and visions with you…hands and feet in the mud, searching, probing, the constant trickle of flow, the rich earth, Cedar growth and death, constant. The rich, rich smell of it all, loamy, wet, so incredibly female….thank you for your vulnerability, thank you for you questing, thank you for your gentleness with yourself and with me, thank you, Naomi, for helping me understand my wild craft, my wild photo wanders. I can’t wait until the next time we create together, we hold space together, we cry and love and love together.
I love these words you have written on rewilding.
“Rewilding to me is a remembering, a tuning into the Earth & her sacred, ancient ways & energy. Of beginning to match our nature with Nature. To allow ourselves to listen to our heart beat & the heart beat of the earth, air, water, fire & begin to bring balance back within ourselves & so then without us as well. To allow there to be seasons within our lives & to allow shame & guilt to melt away as we listen to our inner knowing & learn from others who are walking this path & who have walked this path before. To unlearn all that does not serve & begin anew. Being mindful with our choices, our words, our food. But also being gentle with ourselves in the unfolding.
I find it amazing that now rewilding is a movement. Yet I have always felt that deep connection to be connected with the earth & it is always there. All of us are wild deep within. We have just forgotten the old ways. The most basic of ways. To flow with our own seasons within the seasons. To be unwavering in our strength & to above all be connected with all beings.
By slowing down & spending time in nature, gathering food, preparing our own food. Remembering that all food is living & that we must take life to live and yet we can give back and so the circle of life continues. That, in the end our own lives will end and if we allow return to the sacred circle. We all need to be humble and we all need to accept and embrace our innate power and light as beings who are here to protect and live as one with this earth. We are here to create a new way. Together.”
Rewilding photographic wanders take us on a journey through a wild and natural landscape that we love or are drawn to, and in so doing we travel inwards, searching for lost or broken parts of ourselves, our wild selves, “collecting the bones” of our personal stories so to speak. The forest, trees, roots, rivers, shoreline, caves, stone, sand and mud draw us towards them. Perhaps we tune in to one or another element more, the river forever running, bringing life and taking it away, a babbling brook of women’s voices, tears, laughter, wisdom of ages, perhaps the mud, rich and mucky covering our hands, feet, bellies….there is healing here, on this journey, this process, of wandering over the road, away from the garden, towards that untended self, tracking a wild woman hiding in the shadows, foraging for sweet berries, sweet truths of self, delicious intuition, flashes of realization, there is release here, in casting off domestic shame, slowly peeling off layers of preconception, and allowing Mother’s embrace, Mother’s example embodied in Tree, Flow, Root, Soar, Release, Compost, there is love here, self love, self embrace.
Thank you for your courage Naomi. Tender Love, Belinda
Naomi and her partner Dante and their two children live in a beautiful, semi wild setting on the land in Sooke, BC, where they offer, facilitate and hold space for rewilding, community, healing, play, spa and wild food events. They are an amazing, inspiring couple. I have learned so much from them, recieved so much love and hope. I am ever grateful. <3 Belinda
#awildwomanproject #abeautifulbodyproject #rewildingphotography #bodypositive #downtotheriver #wildwander #rewild #innertracking #wildwoman #collectingthebones #remembering #unlearning #forage
Posted on July 27, 2016
into the depths
a wild woman project
What does it mean to stand there at the brink of the chasm, the very edge of our own shame, our terrifying personal stories of pain, neglect, abuse, loneliness? We don’t go there, do we? or only very reluctantly. We have been cast out of our land of knowing, taught to become afraid of our wild intuition, our deep connection!
Let us reacquaint ourselves then with this perceived underbelly, what is dark, murky, unknown, it has been cast for far too long as dirty, evil, something to be tamed and held back. What is this mystery that smacks of female depths? It is all that is fertile, fertile within it’s cycles of rise and fall, struggle and emerge. It unequivocally vulnerable, shivering at the edge of the lake under the full moon. It is wildly intuitive. It is simultaneously gentle, wide-eyed with wander and fierce and bold with protection!
Each wild wander, either through forest, into the river, down by the sea or up into arid climbs takes us step by step in to an inner tracking, and encounter with a forgotten, lost or hurt part of ourselves.
Beautiful S. here stands still for a long moment of encounter with herself and the river, deep, dark, so cold, yet welcoming, cleansing. I love her tender entry into her own intimate process, tentative at first, and then plunging down to reemerge with a shout of joy on the other side
It seems so much is of what is unnecessary, hindering, dampening of desire and creative potential is discard by this plunge into the river of trust. And, so much is gained, an immersive thrill that invigorates the body knowing, the belonging, the should connection to a source. Unfettered from domestic conditions of thou shalt not, wear this, wear that, hide your shame, cover up your scars or breasts woman! do not dare defend your cubs or wail with sadness or shudder with pleasure, woman! Unfettered, a wild woman, howling like a wolf scampers up the far side of the river into the thick Cedar at its edge.
I am honoured to be growing through my wild woman project in the presence and trust of some incredible women, who grace me with their vulnerable beauty, their undressing and casting off of outdated shrouds, for some easier than for others, each opening and vulnerable, bold and wild in their own way. I am grateful to witness their desire to rewild their connection to their own bodies, and to the land body of our Mother, and in so doing become part of this process myself.
with a wild heart full of love,
#rewildingphotography #awildwomanproject #wildhealing #wildwander #abeautifulbodyproject #intothedepths #wildedge
Posted on March 27, 2016
At first I wanted to call this ‘food porn’, but then I had to pause, why ‘porn’? What is it about my / our relationship to sensuality that causes me / us to debase this incredible fruit of the sea? Why not honour and celebrate this luscious, miraculous, delicate and delicious gift from our Mother Earth, or Mother Sea instead? And so here she is, hand-picked and photographed by me, Belinda White of Apple Star Photo and steamed, shucked and presented by Andria Green of Real Good Food, an oyster naked and glowing for all to see. This is where Rewilding revives and reconnects our intimate entwinement and sensual bond with the our giving Earth, our nurturing Mother. Rewilding excites us, invites us to bask in beauty and in bounty, reminds us who we are and how we belong.
#rewild #wildfood #foragetofeast #awildwomanproject #sensualoysterphoto #wildfoodphotography #applestarphoto #realgoodfood