50 Faces 50 Lives

Where do ideas come from? Where do you do your best thinking? In the bath? Walking? Living in the country I drive a lot. It’s a  1-2 hour trip to most places that I visit. Driving country roads is my thinking time. A time to consolidate ideas and dream up new projects. Ideas are funny things. They are rarely new but rather a consolidation of what we have heard or seen and how our brain makes sense of them.

A number of conversations recently led me to think about images of ageing. Positive images. I’m not talking about the stylist created images of older women trussed up to look young. I’m talking about older people living a good life according to their own definition and looking the way they are in their later years. One of my favourite books is Advanced Love by Ari Seth Cohen. It shows beautiful photographs of older couples. Some stylish but all expressing themselves as people at an older age. I love the photographs of older women by Richard Avedon too. Wonderful!

Richard Avedon photograph

It’s a 2 hour drive to the beach house and by the time I saw the sea I’d decided to incorporate positive images and role models of ageing into a series for Viva 70. I’ve called it 50 Faces 50 Lives. I interview 50 people in their later years who are living a good life according to their own very diverse definitions. Ageing well is a very personal notion and we create what works for us. If you would like to be part of this ” project” please contact me, either as a subject or if you know someone who  has an interesting take on ageing well, we’d love to know.

To break down stereotypes of older people we need to present diverse stories and images. We aren’t all gray nomads. We don’t all soak up the resources of the health system. We don’t all look like the lovely Helen Mirren. We aren’t all wealthy  self funded retirees going on cruises, having paid off our mortgages at age 29! Neither are we all climbing Everest! But many of us have created our own unique definition of living well at an older age and its these stories I’d like to share.

24 September 2019 | Living Well

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