Monthly Archive for October, 2015

Page 2 of 10

The end of the season

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Positano – The season has ended. This is Marina @eauditalie posting on @burndiary


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My darling sister @giuliasersale posing for me in her home in Positano on a rainy day.


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Somebody Up There Likes Her – This is Marina @eauditalie posting on @burndiary


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Rome is where I live. This morning I wanted to cross the bridge above but it was being used as a film-set and was temporarily closed. So I went down by the river and found a duck. This is Marina @eauditalie posting on @burndiary

Kerry Payne Stailey – Left Behind

Kerry Payne Stailey

Left Behind




Kerry Payne won a coveted Lucie Award this week for this essay Left Behind on suicide,  and also for her The Children I Never Had. A remarkable two story validation for work that came from her own personal pain in both cases. Kerry is by all accounts a joyful woman. I never met anyone so optimistic. Yet she digs deep. Deals with her personal tragedies by using photography to heal herself and to help others. Brave. Noble. Both of her essays were published first here on Burn. So naturally we are very proud of Kerry. 

What is even better? I know for sure that Kerry will only use this award as a springboard. She will not stop here. The woman knows no bounds. I am already looking forward to where she takes us next. For sure she will take us someplace we have never been before.




Kerry Payne Stailey is an Australian photographer based in New York City. She is drawn to the healing power of photography – a tool she uses for exploring and acknowledging emotions as guides to the path of happiness. Her long term project “Left Behind” probes the complicated grief facing those left behind when somebody they love dies by suicide.


The Children (I Never Had)

‘The Children (I Never Had)’ explores the bloody battle of infertility, of hope and loss, played out monthly by women everywhere in their fruitless quest to become mothers. Our year of reproductive discontent was poetic and confronting and bittersweet, so like the melancholy I carry for the babies I did not. These are the children I imagined would be ours, and the menstrual blood that defied us, every twenty eighth day.


I was not called to be a mother
all the years I might have been.

now there is him
and in his eyes I see them,
the children I never had.

calendars turn
a battle of wills

forgive me, love
my body has won.

so quietly
we grieve
the babies I bleed.


Related links

Kerry Payne Stailey



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Trying to choose which photo to start with I realize none are good enough. So I might as well start at the beginning of my day with Tessa, our beloved dog, on our doorstep. This is Marina @eauditalie posting on @burndiary.

From “Song of Oaxaca”



Oaxaca, Mexico. From “Song of Oaxaca” a book in the making.


12190962_10156171510520022_1591456686920204472_n Chiapas, Mexico. The indigenous Maya culture runs deep in the highlands of Guatemala and into Chiapas. While tourists run all over San Cristobal de las Casas, some of the smaller villages harder to reach see few outsiders. Political turmoil has plagued Chiapas for years and the indigenous communities see themselves as apart from the Mexican government. Like most cultures of the land, it’s not always easy to get ” inside” for photos. Trust must be built. This takes awhile. I slept on the floor of this small house (no hostels) and this mother of four was making tortillas for me yet had allowed no pictures even after two days. Early one morning I saw the passerby coming to my left, I saw a moment coming, and I couldn’t resist shooting and made this one Kodachrome risking possible anger from my host. Fast eye contact. Eye contact at the right split second is always a key for me. She only smiled with this one camera click , and I didn’t shoot any more and just sat down for my breakfast of tortillas, beans, and an egg. I also had a Polaroid and later shot a picture of her family for their wall. This photo later appeared in a NatGeo story on the Maya and in my book Divided Soul (Phaidon). I’m always grateful for hospitality. Most especially in communities of the indigenous where history has created boundaries. In the end, humans are humans regardless of culture. Yet one must respect local traditions first. Then see if you can humbly make a photograph. Good intentions are always felt if sincere. #mexico #maya #chiapas

Happy bday Mom


Happy Birthday Mom  Maryanna Harvey 1919-2013. The single greatest influence on my life. Non judgmental. Inspiration to all she met. Our family glue. Her last words, ” we never have to say goodbye”. I love you forever Mom.


12190119_10156168666065022_7754790385083264111_nOaxaca, Mexico. Retro. I’ve spent many weeks in Oaxaca state and city and will spend more time shooting there very soon. My piece in NatGeo “Song of Oaxaca” will also be the book title. For years I’ve been thinking of this book. Other books jumped in front. Cuba, HipHop, Rio, Haenyeo, Tell It Like It Is.,Trying to get all of what I shoot in a book is a formidable effort. I shoot way more than I can publish. The very nature of book publishing literally means at least a year of work after all the pictures are done and in my case that’s mostly years for each project. Here a band enters a church service. Pretty normal during all Mexican fiestas. I’m mostly an available light photographer but occasionally pop in a small strobe as here. A big part of my work is simply being in position. A gringo standing in front of the church assembled with a camera and flash means I’ve made friends with both the priest and the band. I try to blend as much as possible. Move deftly. Make eye contact. Go to work. Leave with smiles and hugs. A great great way to live life !!#mexico #oaxaca