“The past is a candle at great distance: too close to let you quit, too far to comfort you.”
“Memory believes before knowing remembers.”
Thanks to Tina for her challenge “to look backward for a while” with this theme.
In the animal kingdom, humans are a species with a highly developed sense of time. We know past, present, and future and often try to imagine time frames that dwarf our own life spans.
Waiting, the theme for this week’s Photo Challenge, implies expectations of future events. “I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop…” or for the adventure to begin. When waiting seems like a waste of time, it’s because the thing to come is more valuable to you than the present moment. However, if you look at it another way, the present moment is the only real moment and therefore more valuable.
To wait well and gracefully may be to enjoy the present moment and allow the future moment to unfold “all in due time”.
For this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #70, Patti invites to explore the world of monochrome–which includes black and white and sepia, as well as different shades of one color.
“…emotions come through much stronger in black and white. Color is distracting in a way, it pleases the eye but it doesn’t necessarily reach the heart.” – Kim Hunter
I love the drama of a really good monochrome shot.
To see in color is a delight for the eye, but to see in black and white is a delight for the soul – Andri Cauldwell
“When you photograph people in color, you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in Black and white, you photograph their souls!”
“Color is descriptive. Black and white is interpretive.” – Eliott Erwitt
“Black and white are the colors of photography. To me they symbolize the alternatives of hope and despair to which mankind is forever subjected” – Robert Frank
Ann-Christine is hosting this week’s photo challenge with the theme Candid. She invites us to share pictures of people and animals who had no idea they were being photographed.
Stealth shots seem to require that the subject is comfortable with the photographer’s general presence or that the photographer has a lens that allows clear shots from a distance. I cannot claim the long lens, but I can claim that I know a few people and animals who don’t mind me stalking them.
The challenge in candid photos is to be able to capture spontaneous moments when the subject is simply doing their thing, preferably something interesting. Another challenge is in setting up the shot without too many background distractions without “staging” it. Serendipity and shutter speed definitely become factors in the results.
Ann-Christine challenges us to illustrate the difference angles can make on our perception of the world. I am reminded of the ancient Indian story of the blind men and the elephant, retold in the poem by John Godfrey Saxe that begins like this:
It was six men of Indostan
To learning much inclined,
Who went to see the Elephant
(Though all of them were blind),
That each by observation
Might satisfy his mind.
From my photo archives, I found an album of pictures taken five years ago next week on my “birthday cruise”. I had been working at Discovery World, a museum in Milwaukee that owns a replica of a 19th century cargo ship they named The Denis Sullivan. For my birthday, I was gifted a short trip out of the harbor and back to dock. There was absolutely no wind that day, so though we unfurled the sails, we didn’t go very far or very fast. In the calm, I found that taking photos from all different angles became the excitement of the day.
My perspective on sailing Lake Michigan, therefore, was all about tranquility and discipline. The crew had everything “shipshape” and moved like clockwork. However, I’ve read accounts of shipwrecks on the lake that must have been the picture of chaos and terror.
Perspective makes a huge difference. In this complex world, we must remember the danger of a single story and humbly leave room in our imaginations for something outside of our own experience.
So, oft in theologic wars
The disputants, I ween,
Rail on in utter ignorance
Of what each other mean,
And prate about an Elephant
Not one of them has seen!