Staying Stylish in Suburbia

Imagine Finding Me

Monday, January 13, 2014

Yesterday afternoon while pushing my three year old daughter on the swing, she suddenly burst into song. It was a song that I taught her, and that I had learned at around the same age. In that moment with her swinging through the air, I had the strange sensation that I was also standing behind my former self as a small child. 

I think that is one of the rare and unexpected gifts that goes along with parenting. Our children, while completely themselves, are also a reflection of our own life and past experiences. Reliving the innocence and glee of singing about a horsie at the top of my lungs was a simple demonstration of that connection. At the same time it was also a bitter-sweet reminder that we can never go back to visit former selves...or can we?

Tokyo-born, London-based photographer Chino Otsuka has done a beautiful job exploring this question with her series titled Imagine Finding Me. In this deeply personal project, Otsuka takes the idea of a past and present photography to a new level, inserting her present-day self into photographs from her childhood. "The digital process becomes a tool," She explained. "Almost like a time machine as I'm embarking on the journey to where I once belonged and at the same time becoming a tourist in my own history."

I find her work to be hauntingly beautiful without being overly sentimental.  I will let it speak for itself though...

I think it's so interesting how the artist chooses not to interact directly with her former self in any of the photographs. It seems to be more about sharing that same space in time again rather than interfering or changing the moment. I'm curious to hear what you think about this project? What emotions, if any,  did it evoke in you?

Photography Source


  1. Incredible post. I am just "chewing on it". It's taking me way back. Trying it on for size.