June 13, 2009
Everyone she knew called her Holly, but my mother’s legal name was Helen. Her parents named her Helen Lake Foote after her grandmother, but from birth they decided to call her Holly. This caused much confusion throughout her life, and my mom often complained about it, but always with good humor. When she met a new doctor she often would be greeted as Helen (the official name on the paper work) and then would tell the doctor to call her Holly. She’d often joke, however, that the office should send the bill to Helen, as if she was an entirely different person. I found this “Helen” inscribed into a donated brick courtyard on the USC campus today.
June 13, 2015
I still think of my mom anytime I encounter the names Helen or Holly out in the world. I'd say Holly really stands out to me and gets my attention, so it's pretty neat that as an actress I get to work in HOLLYwood.
I completed this photo project from May 2009 to May 2010. Six years later, I'm reposting the series with additional thoughts. Here's what I wrote about it when I started.