Saying Goodbye

On June 19, 2009, a week after her 63rd birthday, we said goodbye to my beautiful mother, Chloe Beeson Blom.  She was an incredible woman who gave me so much and my heart will ache for her.  The past year was difficult, watching as she battled the pancreatic cancer that was ravaging her.  Trying to remain hopeful and positive was all we could do, and we made the most of our time together, knowing in our hearts that it was probably limited.  I am so grateful for this past year with my mom, a year to say goodbye and love her just as she was.  I would like to honor her by documenting people with cancer living their lives, just as she is in this image with her grandsons (my  boys).  The images will be displayed in a book and exhibit to benefit cancer research.  This image was taken after she returned from the hospital where she had the surgery that discovered the cancer.  She has her cutest wig on and is truly happy to be with her boys.  She continued to live the rest of that year, playing poker with her grandkids, celebrating Thanksgiving with her family, working, having lunch with friends, going to church, weddings, on trips and enjoying her gifts.  If you love someone with cancer or have cancer and would like to help me honor my mother, please contact me at the studio so we can set up your session.  You will receive an 8×10 Archival image for your participation.  


  1. I have very fond memories of you mother and the time she gave to me when I did an internship at the studio when I was a photography student. When it came time to do an internship for school I knew I wanted to learn from the best in our industry so I called your parents. They did not hesitate to accept me into their busy lives and share their knowledge.

    Everyone who walked into that studio loved her. I remember her driving us to lunch and getting waves and waving back at everyone in the town. She was like a celebrity to me. She had a passion for portraiture and an eye for creativity, but I learned more about the art of selling and building relationships with clients from her than anything else.

    After graduation I interviewed for a chance to work at the studio. I can remember freaking out over what to wear because your mom was always dressed so great, with such style, and I wanted to look as good as her! I didn’t end up getting the job, but many of the questions and conversations I had with your parents that day stays with me. One question on their test said “What’s most important in photography?” A. Proper exposure. B. Focus. C. That you have professional equipment. D. That people like you.

    Being a “Brookie”, I answered A. After the interview they asked me if I had any questions and I asked for the answer to that question. They said D. They said, “If people like you, if they had a good time being photographed, and if you build relationships with them they will overlook minor technical flaws in your work.” It’s always stuck with me.

    The person they did hire ended up not working out, and they later called to offer me the job but by then I had taken over teaching at Brooks for Joyce Wilson. I always wondered how different things would have been if I’d chosen D.

    Best wishes to you and your family.
    Erin Kenly McDonald

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