W H E R E C R O S S S T R E E T M E E T S C H U R C H S T R E E T
I took these photos in August. Walking through the back streets of Helston, a noticeable chill in the air. It was the first time I’d seen orange leaves on the ground since March’s freak snowstorm; first time I’d pulled this turtleneck (or anything for that matter) out the “wintery” side of my wardrobe. All humidity had left the air. It was August and autumn had come early.
I took these photos in Helston. In the roads, I think of as the old part; at the turning where Cross Street meets Church Street. Filled with Victorian and Georgian architecture; lead-lined windows and black iron railings. Alleyways and old street lamps and deep roadside rain gutters that run like little rivers. I like this part of town best; lined with stone terraced houses, no two the same. There are always cats here who wander over to have their head scratched. Much friendlier than those who live on our lane and make off with rabbits in their teeth.
I also took these photos because People Tree had sent me culottes. I always feel a little weird when it comes to displaying gifted items on here, but a collaboration between an ethical brand and the V&A is as close to maintaining integrity whilst allowing product placement, as it gets for me. But I can confirm that they’re comfortable, flattering and with pleasingly deep pockets. I’m genuinely tempted to unpick them at some point and create a pattern, so I can sew my own in other fabrics. I don’t have a sewing machine or much sewing know-how, but I’m very tempted nonetheless.
Since taking these pictures, it’s taken me months to sit down and write this post. Which as a generally sporadic blogger, really isn’t saying much. But all the same, all this summer I’ve felt an internal resistance; an uncomfortable, unsettled sense that something isn’t right and I didn’t yet have the words to express it. I’m entirely certain I still lack the necessary vocabulary, but here goes…
Helston is the nearest town to where I live and yet it’s somewhere I don’t think I’ve ever really photographed or shared online before. I suspect in some ways this is because Helston isn’t considered an affluent part of Cornwall. It isn’t thought of as picturesque or fashionable or noteworthy. It isn’t Falmouth or Mousehole or St Ives. And in ways, this resembles the direction I want to take online. I want to bring this blog closer to home; sharing the bits of my life that aren’t so picturesque or fashionable or noteworthy (or should I say Instagram-worthy).
That said there will always be things that go unmentioned. I am a quiet, discreet person who in real life is unforthcoming with information, yet somehow online, is weirdly comfortable to share snippets with strangers. You could perhaps deduce that I seek online a social connection I find so lacking in real life. But psychoanalysis aside, I expect I will always be considering where I draw the line between what’s personal and what’s private.
My mind reels when it comes to the intricacies of how I represent my life online. For example, I’m well aware that the part of Helston I photographed (whilst desiring a greater level of messiness, intimacy and authenticity) is still amongst it’s most attractive. I imagine there will always be discrepancies and short-comings in my content. And that will always bother me. But at the heart of it, my desire is for greater honesty, rawness and “realness” – whatever it is that means.