No – nothing NSFW here. Advocate photo editor Danny Fulgencio gives us the backstory on the photo shoot with 93-year-old Beatrice Oldfield.

Author Bee Oldfield, by Danny Fulgencio

Author Bee Oldfield, by Danny Fulgencio

In photographing author and Lake Highlands resident Beatrice Oldfield, 93, I was reminded of a grad school instructor’s mantra on writing about people. He’d say something to the effect that to write intimately about someone you needed to get into their bedroom.

Raised eyebrows aside, he was right. So why not apply the same principle to photography?

When Beatrice asked where I wanted to make her photo, I responded quickly. After all, unless you’re a journalist, you spend a third of your life asleep, so what says more about you than the place you rest your head?

What struck me about the Oldfield’s bedroom were the sweet portraits of their daughters hanging over their bed. They were details I just couldn’t pass up… reminders of those we hold dear and the fleeting nature of youth, among other things.

Before leaving, Beatrice handed me a copy of her book, “Brace Yourself: a letter to those approaching 90 with coping clues from one who’s been there.” I’ve never been big on autographs, but I asked her to inscribe it with a message to my 18-month-old son… something he might appreciate 90 years down the road.

Here’s what she wrote:

From Bee

Keep on keeping on —Bee old … old … Oldfield