I have photographed memoirs from my daughter’s childhood for nearly six years. I’m more interested in collecting snippets evocative of her, rather than documenting specifics. My daughter has asthma and I never know when a mild cold will turn into an emergency. Naturally, I’ve developed a pervasive concern for her health. I want to create images that help remind us of the space and time in between the intensity. Most of the images I have from my own childhood are in my memories. Maybe this also influenced my approach to photographing her—a desire to evoke a fantastical sense of childhood. I have shot and edited this series exclusively on my iPhone. The phone is convenient and allows for a less invasive, more immediate response to what’s going on around me. I also see shooting on mobile as being part of something bigger. Mobile photography has reshaped what information is readily accessible, thereby more profoundly impacting how people perceive the world. In sharing glimpses of this tiny person’s life, I feel that I’m contributing to a broader, collective story. I hope that over time this series of short stories will form a more comprehensive portrait of her early years, leaving room for her imagination and memory to fill in the gaps.
Gwen Coyne is a graphic designer by profession and manages a digital marketing team in San Francisco, California. She studied painting and psychology at the University of California, Santa Cruz, but after graduation found herself drawn mostly to photography. Before beginning her design and marketing career, she worked as a counselor for severely emotionally disturbed children, conducting art workshops. In her spare time, she enjoys chronicling time spent with her six-year-old daughter and capturing sights from her cell.