Frank Petronio photographer

Mom at 82

My mother died on July 15. It was sudden and shocking yet peaceful, outdoors on a beautiful Summer day. She was spared a long slow decline and all indications are she didn’t suffer. While dying in your sleep remains the popular choice, I think this was a pretty fortunate way to exit. Seeing her body closed the matter for me and now it’s a matter of supporting my sister who hasn’t yet found quite the solace that I have. 


I broke down and did a hotel room shoot on my last road trip. It was fun enough and Lex is a beautiful woman but I just think bedroom shots are kind of sleazy. But not so sleazy enough not to do them lol. They’re more likely bittersweet and heartbreaking testaments to my aging and confusion because at this late date I fall into Dad mode more than being any sort of suave, sophisticated photographer. 

Argh should have moved her right thigh a bit and had her sit up a touch, there is no flab on her.

What I did differently was shoot everything in room light and high ISO, moving her and the camera to get the best lighting rather than overpowering the existing room lights. It is a different approach, trying to replicate what I see without the carefully positioned and more powerful photography lights. It’s harder in many ways and takes more care in post-processing. 

Maybe next time we can go outdoors?

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