The Wisdom of Sundays / Oprah Winfrey



"Prior to finding out that I had been selected to photograph The Wisdom of Sundays, my only experience with Oprah was watching her show. Growing up, five days a week at 4pm, Oprah filled our home with stories that inspired us, educated us, and ultimately, changed us. Over time I came to realize that Oprah’s calling is so much more than just to do a show to entertain people--that she was using her power to increase the consciousness of the entire world. To say I was humbled when I learned that my photographs were going to be featured in her new book is an understatement. 

Once the news sunk in, I admit I started to feel a little nervous: How could my images possibly pair up with the powerful and wise words of the incredible teachers and visionaries featured in the book, including Oprah herself?  But as I read the introduction where Oprah talks of the awe-inspiring spiritual power of nature, I really connected to the idea that my photographs could represent both “the majestic abundance and unseen details” (as Oprah says) we often overlook. With photography, and all aspects of my life, I am continually trying to strip away, rid distraction, and let things breathe. 

I had a moment while shooting, that was quite profound for me. I stood among The Twelve Apostles, an area on the property with twelve magnificent oak trees, and I realized that everything in my life had led me to that moment. Every place I’ve traveled, every photo I’ve taken, every person I’ve met. It occurred to me that literally every decision I’ve made had brought me to this sacred spot. I was filled with so much gratitude for every experience that brought me to that place. As Oprah would say, it was an Aha moment for me, and I felt so connected… to All. 

The Wisdom of Sundays features photographs from Oprah’s home, as well as some from my travels around the world. Every photograph in the book was selected to help the reader feel something. I’m always asking people, “Yes, but how did it make you feel?” That, above all else, is the true gauge for me. I want my images to stir something in you. Maybe it’s a sense of calm. Or a renewed appreciation for things often overlooked. Or maybe, just maybe, it inspires something in you to take steps toward your own true expression." - Melissa Gidney Daly, from the Huffington Post