On The Nest: An Emotional Photo Series by Dona Schwartz

On The Nest: An Emotional Photo Series by Dona Schwartz

On The Nest: An Emotional Photo Series by Dona Schwartz

For the series, “On the Nest,” photographer Dona Schwartz spent years tracking down empty nesters in Minnesota and Illinois beginning in 2006. In the first half of her series, Schwartz captured expecting parents in the nurseries they’d made for their coming babies. In the other half, she captured parents once their children had moved away from home for school, work, or other reasons.

On The Nest: An Emotional Photo Series by Dona Schwartz

On The Nest: An Emotional Photo Series by Dona Schwartz

Schwartz captures the parent/s standing in the room, just as the child left it, either carefully arranged by the children or waiting for mom to clean it. Will the rooms remain untouched? Will the room be changed for another purpose? Those questions are not answered, but the same message that emanates from the pictures is the feeling of emptiness and loneliness the parents share realizing their child is now on their own and gone.

On The Nest: An Emotional Photo Series by Dona Schwartz

On The Nest: An Emotional Photo Series by Dona Schwartz

Schwartz, who is an empty nester herself with three adult children, said through doing the project she came to appreciate the many changes parents are forced to adapt to in the course of a lifetime. ‘When we become parents our lives are forever changed. Then after the many years of child-rearing – the nurturing, hard work and self-sacrifice – it quietly comes to an end.’

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