Jenny Lewis is a British photographer whose most recent project has struck a chord with many. The creative set about photographing mothers with their newborn babies within their first day of life, calling it One Day Young. The photos are natural, raw, fresh, poignant and incredibly beautiful. You can feel the air of caution as the new mothers get familiar with their newfound most important person. You can feel their disbelief at what they’ve created, their joy and their overwhelming love that before now, they had never experienced. Refreshingly, you also get a sense of the mothers coming to terms with the dramatic shift between the person they once were and the mother they must now become.
The women involved aren’t made up to look profile-picture ready; they’re tired, they’re worn out but their happiness and love melts any former distress away. The unposed look of awe in the mothers’ faces is something to behold, their apparent anxiety is reassuring. Quite frankly, we could look at these photos all day, not just because the babies are too cute to handle but for the mirror they so perfectly hold up to those first 24 hours. The achievement, the fear, the love, the uncertainty, the physicality – everything.
Lewis has been adding to this collection for seven years now, as per the BBC.
Published earlier this year as a book by Hoxton Mini Press, One Day Young is a celebration of what she calls the “rite of passage into motherhood.” “I wanted to tell a story about the strength and resilience of women, post-childbirth, that I feel goes largely unacknowledged in today’s world,” she explains.
“I wanted to concentrate on the first 24 hours, when a woman’s body is still engulfed by hormones, to capture the unrelenting physicality of the moment, straight from the battlefield. Sweat still glistening on the mothers’ skin, the translucent umbilical cord freshly severed, and wide-eyed as the women come to terms with the magnitude of what they have achieved and survived.”
Check out JennyLewis.net for the stunning collection.