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Snapshot Inspiration

Shooting With Soul: What's In Your Bag?

I recently decided to try my hand at a photography project and found the perfect book to guide the way, Shooting With Soul by Alessandra Cave from Quarry Books.

Alessandra challenges the readers to progress slowly through the book's various activities to ultimately "find a window into your soul ­— and also find joy." The projects aim to help you discover who you are, celebrate the everyday and experience life to the fullest.

"The truth is that regardless of how much we know about anything, all we really have to offer — in full integrity — is ourselves," Alessandra writes.

So in a small act of self-discovery, I tried the "What is in your bag?" prompt and photographed the contents of my purse. With the exception of a few wrinkled receipts, this is pretty much it.

What's In Your Bag?

Photo by Heather Linder

A handful of pens and a journal, headphones, sunglasses, a wallet pouch, Burt's Bees lip balm, a necklace and my iPhone.

It's definitely not the most exciting collection, and I'm no Sherlock Holmes, but all of our belongings tell some story of our lives. The bag is a new one for me, a Christmas present from my in-laws. However, it's one of the first I've owned that represents my style lately — simple, classic, neutral. The pens and journal are an obvious one. I'm a writer, a note taker, a list maker. I'd much prefer to write a thought down than to key it into Evernote. The sunglasses and lip balm are both a consequence of the endless winter weather and wishful thinking that spring is around the corner. Headphones for my bus ride to work. A phone and wallet to function in society. A necklace for, well who knows how that got in there.

The project was an enjoyable experiment in lighting, using a camera other than my iPhone and playing around with object composition. You'd be surprised how much work it takes to make a bunch of stuff look casually strewn about.

A few Shot Ideas from the book:

So what's in your bag?





Heather Linder

Heather is a journalist and writer living in Chicago with her composer husband and art-loving puppy, Lancelot. She's on an endless quest for the city's best coffee and is endlessly inspired by Chicago's magnificent skyline. Heather is a bookworm, aspiring chef, and NPR fanatic. She's in the process of teaching her beagle to use a French press and overcoming her fear of DIY.

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