fiddle leaf photography
Nov 30, 2015
Working from home can be lonely. Like talk to your computer and hope it talks back lonely. I routinely bounce ideas off my husband but sometimes I need to hash ideas out with someone who is in the business. Enter, monthly meetings with my friend Katie. They are half meeting, half escape from the house. The ‘meetings’ take place in coffee shops and usually involve a hot beverage and high calorie treat (as all meetings should!). At one of our meetings we were talking about business names. I’d had a session with a mentor who had suggested I change my business name to my first and last name. I was considering it. Strongly considering it. Then Katie asked me why I named my business Fiddle Leaf. I started telling her the whole story about how it started with a plant named Fergus. She just about choked on her coffee laughing, and then like any good colleague would do, she told me to write a blog post about it.
Here’s the story:
We were walking through Greenland Garden Centre on a wintery afternoon in 2012. My husband, me and our year old baby. I can’t even remember what we were there for, but I know it wasn’t a ginormous plant. Once I spotted that gorgeous Fiddle Leaf Fig though, I knew he was coming home with us. I’m sure it was -40C outside, but we managed to get him from the cart (carting him around wasn’t easy!) to the truck and home in one piece, and without frost on him. On the way home (which was about 5 minutes) we named him Fergus. We aren’t normally the plant-naming-types, but since he was taking up at least 3/4 of the back seat of the truck and was almost squishing our baby in the back beside him, it seemed like he needed a name. Fergus it was. Fergus The Fig.
Fergus had big glossy green leaves that reached towards the sun. He was the king of plants and he demanded your gaze. He leaned towards the light, searching every day for those glorious golden rays. I gave him the primo spot for light in our house and I was convinced that he was thankful for it. I’d read that Fiddle Leaf Figs were challenging to keep alive, but not Fergus. We even moved him from one house to another about a year later and he stayed happy.
His needs were basic – water and sun, and yet he managed to produce such beautiful leaves. It’s the way I feel about photography – put the right simple ingredients together and magic can be created. He was a seeker of light. I am a seeker of light. He survived when he probably shouldn’t have and he made his presence known. I was bound and determined to do the same. It seemed fitting to name my business after him. And so, Fiddle Leaf Photography was born.
But here’s the story after the story:
I just about killed Fergus. It was horrible. We came home from being in Hawaii for 2 weeks in February 2014 and Fergus was a stick with a few leaves with his poor little shrivelled up leaves laying on the ground around his pot. In an attempt to save money, I’d lowered the heat to 10 degrees while we were gone. I was 12 weeks pregnant and in a haze of puke and exhaustion. I wasn’t thinking clearly and had left my giant tropical plant in a very non-tropical house. He was the only indoor plant we had and I managed to freeze him to death!
I plucked off the rest of the dead leaves and left him as a giant stick with a few green leaves for many months. I couldn’t bear the thought of throwing him out.
I was constantly moving him out of the way when I was taking pictures in our house as his raggedy brown leaves were distracting. As much as I loved him, it was time to admit defeat. I took the scissors, cut his best leaf off and stuck it in a cup of water and then threw the rest of him out (sad!). I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. I’d hoped his good leaf would magically sprout roots. In all honestly I probably should have Googled it instead of just winging it. It took a couple of months, but miraculously tiny roots appeared (I must be in the good books with the Plant Gods). I moved the leaf from the cup of water to some dirt and crossed my fingers.
Let’s think of it as a story of new beginnings and the fight for life, instead of how I killed my plant with the thermostat, ok?
I’m happy to say Baby Fergus is thriving. It’s been 2 years since I froze him and I’m happy to report he’s sprouted 4 new leaves, which I think is pretty impressive for a Fiddle Leaf Fig. He now lives on the credenza in our living room beside some of my favourite things. Origami from our wedding which holds wishes from our guests (in a jar filled with sand from the beach we were married on) and a picture of my Dad. Given his relation to my photography, I think it’s fitting that Fergus now sits beside some of my most precious memories.
After much thinking about it, I’ve decided to keep the Fiddle Leaf Photography name. It feels right to me. I look at Fergus many times a day; I see him thriving despite the odds and it makes me want to keep growing and producing new ‘leaves’.
Fiddle Leaf Photography offers in-home newborn photo sessions and family photo sessions in Edmonton, Sherwood Park, St. Albert and surrounding areas. Please contact me via the ‘let’s chat’ tab or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll talk about life, love,kids and how to best tell your family’s story. Also, be sure to sign up for the newsletter to be up to date on seasonal specials and special announcements.