I spent my youth believing that life starts “out there”, that once I’d leave my hometown, a small city in southern Poland and go “there”, where things are happening, wherever that may be, it would all begin.
My venture out into the world began in a different city, then a different country and eventually a new continent, continuously relocating anywhere but back home. I was accompanied by the feeling of my roots decaying, anxieties and homesickness – a sentiment that took me by surprise.
My relocation back to my hometown happened simultaneously with my sister’s preparation for her school leaving exams and eventually her own departure into independence and adulthood. During my absence there had been births and birthdays, deaths, funerals and fundamental changes to our family structure. Combined, this formed a new family landscape – a confusing and unfamiliar one. Beti – my sister, led me on my perplexing journey back, while I patiently observed her venturing away, as if we became one another’s guide.
Emilia Martin (1991) is a documentary and portrait photographer currently based between Poland and the UK. She has participated in various photography courses, such as Krakow Academy of Photography (2016-18) and on the Sputnik Mentoring Programme (2018-19).