These past few months, I’ve really been taking some time to rediscover who I am, where I want to go, and what I want to achieve. The summer solstice was my 6 year anniversary and also the day my divorce was official. And I’ve had a lot of feelings. When you’re splitting a life, a home, and a business, it’s emotional to say the least. And let me just say that I am so grateful for the friends and family that have supported me during this time. Thank you!
I have a very special thanks to my sister Jessica. I have four siblings, but my sister Jessica is my only blood sibling. We’re also closest in age. And maybe it’s the international flights starting when I was 4 and she was 5 that bonded us. Well not initially. From teenagers to early adults, we wanted to rip each other’s heads off. I still have nightmares over those days, but I think we were at each other’s throats so much because we were so similar. For the past ten years, we’ve gotten along great. But in the last 3 years we’ve grown much closer.
[ I should note that Jessica is quite a bit different than me. If you’re curious, we recently completed the 16 personalities test. Jessica: intelligent introvert who marches by the beat of her own drum and logician who thrives in the moment (INTP). Josh: extrovert to the maximum who will risk looking like an idiot for the thrill of feeling alive (ENFP). ]
Now that we’ve both mellowed out in our adulthood, we find ourselves in very similar situations, starting life on the road, building a photography business, and doing whatever the fuck we want. And recently she’s helped me through some very difficult hurdles in my life (and for that I am so grateful). And I’ve been coaching Jessica as well, helping her grow her photography brand Lost Hartman and also teaching her a thing or two about camper life. Actually, that’s not really true. Jessica is sort of in a different class of badassery. She lives in a Honda Element. (It’s like #vanlife, but even cooler.)
Okay, I promise I’m getting to the reason for this blog post, which is named “Independence Day” and has lots of pretty firework pictures I know. But let me first talk about Jessica’s photography. She’s a fly-on-the-wall shooter to the point where she’s invisible, which is a great ninja skill for any candid photographer. She’s also super short, which I know helps too. Anyway, she has this ability to capture raw emotion like nobody’s business. Ooh, she also uses natural light like a champ, has the patience of a saint when photographing kids, and I love how her landscapes emphasizing unique and interesting features that I would totally miss. I should also mention that I recently convinced her to switch from Canon to Fuji, which brings me to those pretty photos in this blog post (shot on Jessica’s Fuji Xt2 and 23mm lens).
This 4th of July was extra special. It marks the last day in our hometown before going off to start our life out west. This has been our goal for quite a few months, but circumstances and a couple family emergencies have prevented us from doing so. But now that the dust has settled and we’ve got all my ducks in a row, we’re finally ready to make the transition. We’re both starting our photography businesses from scratch, although I’m venturing into the world of performance art (with a little photography to pay the bills) and Jessica's Lost Hartman is going from zero to hero fast!
And what a great 4th of July it was! We spent time with our family, I successfully annoyed my niece Kayla and my nephew David, we all ate until our bellies were full, and Jessica and I diaboloed/photographed the night away. If you don’t already know, the diabolo is an incredibly fast moving artform and really difficult to photograph at night. So even though she’s still working on actually catching a diabolo (she’ll get it soon), Jessica certainly captured the diabolo beautifully. In fact, her photos are the first diabolo photos I’ve published and I’ve been doing it for 7 years. Thank you so much for the beautiful photos Jessica.
So enough said. Photos by the very talented Jessica Hartman. On Instagram @losthartman or Facebook.com/losthartman. I also included a few pictures of Jessica on her trusty rusty (colored) Element with her schnauzer sidekick Molly and a TMNT blankie.
Let the adventure begin! See you on the west coast Jessica.
Josh Hartman, Mountain Unicyclist and Diaboloist