About The Thing With Feathers - Laura Cook

I am a photographer and writer who believes that storytelling can help inspire a generation that will see this is a world worth loving! Come and join me at www.thethingwithfeathers.net and www.lauracookphotography.co.uk

A Journey Nowhere and Everywhere

The Photograph Arrives….

When I first heard the Journey of a Photograph concept I was keen to take part. As a  travel and humanitarian photographer I wanted to take the photograph with me on a trip  overseas and capture images of people’s reactions to the project. The photograph should be with me in Ethiopia right now. I am not there though and nor is the photograph. Instead we are both sat on my bed in the seaside town of Southend-on-Sea in Essex (UK).


Three short weeks ago I found out that a niggling back pain is in reality a growth in my pancreas. Since that discovery all immediate travel plans have been shelved and I am becoming a familiar face at the hospital. A week ago I received an email from Richard, who guest blogged the last section of the photograph’s journey, informing me that it was my turn to take part.

At first I felt like passing on the opportunity as my plan for my section of the project was impossible to complete.  I then took time to reflect on the image and the meaning of a journey and felt that perhaps I could use this as a chance to reflect on what it means to be a traveller grounded. I am a collector of stories; I delight in sitting down with strangers and hearing their voice, their hopes, their history and their dreams. Now my own story is brought sharply into focus and instead I am looking at my own tale and praying this is not a final chapter as I am not yet ready to end the journey. I am used to using images to express myself but decided to take a hesitant step into the world of writing to respond to Emily’s photograph:

My Response…


Dreams That Soar…

I wanted to end this post positively. I found the photograph arriving with me at a very poignant juncture in my own journey. When we are children we all travel in our play and in our dreams. I may be confined and restricted at the moment physically, but any journey that moves us deeply is about far more than the physical. I have added an image to the envelope that acts as the vessel for this project. I took the photo in Nepal last year, it shows a little boy playing with a simple paper aeroplane outside his mountain top school.  His poverty, his geography and his age do not stop him being able to soar above his circumstances with his imagination. My tumour grounds me physically but also gives me cause to offer up thanks for my life and the dreams I have already had the chance to live out. Like the small boy in Nepal I am also able to look out at the world and dream of where I will travel next.


The Journey Goes On…

The Journey of the Photograph has only just begun. If you would like to participate in the project take a look here. If you want to know more about how the project started visit Emily’s blog. To visit my own blog take a look here.