Part 1 - When not to click the shutter. the reality?
I have one time in my life I didn’t’ pull out my camera in rural Mississippi as it just didn’t’ feel right to capture the moment happening in front of my eyes. It was an image I had imagined inside my head of what the Deep South was like with the Mississippi delta blues juke joints on the side of the road. My photojournalist friends said, “you will never be a photo journalist…you didn’t’ take that amazing moment of images.” the truth is i can close my eyes, see the 60 white sorority girls mixing with the man-boy farmer who worked 10,000 plus acres that wanted to talk about football, while a PHD philosophy candidate from york college tried to talk about the future of technology...all while a Mississippi delta blues band played through equipment that might have been as old as the Mississippi blues themselves. it was and is a magical image in my mind.
The truth is, I really never in my life wanted or sought out an award for any photo. I simply found the technology amazing how it captured a moment in time and always remember the first image i saw in a darkroom come to life, as if by magic before my eyes when i developed a print. A reality of a moment captured in time, and i was able to hold it in my hands.
Today, we seem to feel every moment in our lives is somehow a major “moment” with social media and the ability to upload our data. better cameras, worse images...go figure.
Yesterday I sketched and flushed out the idea of, “I come from…my name is.” The entire look, feel, and idea fleshed out in my head. The way I was going to shoot the portraits, the ability to take what was discussed across a few languages and create a short moment or image in time for someone to hopefully learn about someone else’s reality in life.
Today, I am sitting here in a café that I dove into as rain decided to fall. Maybe it is the man upstairs asking me to really think about the idea and what I was going to do.
I don’t know how many people in my class will volunteer to tell their stories. It has taught me a valuable lesson that my journalistic friends who hunt for Pulitzers and other prizes seem to forget when rushing to get a story.
Everyone on the planet has a story to tell. It is the people that tell the story, whether they are right or wrong, they are still people.
I felt what I wrote about a member of my class who basically will never be allowed back into his country was good. I showed him a copy of what his words was turned into and explained how I wanted to take his portrait to go with the story in a certain way. As he read, I could see a man flashing back and forth into too many painful memories of the past. The reality of his life was that there was a lot of pain, and a deeper reality that he probably will never step back on the soil of is homeland.
That is his reality.
I said, “welcome to Switzerland.”
He let out a smile and a slight laugh from within the pain, “this is good, you can print it, just no pictures.”
Part 2 – what is reality?
I am not sure what exactly god is trying to teach me in Switzerland? Am I to just start all over and try to fit into what the norm of the world is and just move along with everything in the box? With the language barrier, I am starting to think by the reactions of the people that all I am here is an idiot who has never done anything in his entire life. Maybe god is teaching me humility? Or I am really an idiot?
my daily lesson in humility is called german class. here I struggle to make sense of all the variables of the language, which is like higher mathematics for me. I just don’t get them too well, yet, I can see spatially and how everything works – just don’t ask me for a formula to prove it. (for the SIG folks actually reading this, sorry, i am not going to add formulas and philosophies from learned minds...it is simply a blog post...ideas off the top of my head)
Part one of this post is a great moment tie into what I was working on this morning when someone asked, “What is reality?”
The question from a SIG was “what is reality” and walking to the class I had formulated a nice answer to a question that has mystified man, probably since his first thought. It is something I wonder about today with the way the world tends to like structure, order, and the safely to explain and live in a world that is familiar and has few ups and downs. It is the world of asking “why?” and when one can’t get an answer, one keeps seeking and looking…somehow reality tends to change.
Science is based on a path of logic and fact that we uncover over time. It is also relatively dynamic in the grand scheme of time, but in our short lifespan in our bodies, it doesn’t appear this way. Instead, we tend to observe with a perspective of what is right in front of our faces – what can be seen, felt, touched by human senses. Then we have tapes in our minds where “feelings” take over any reality of logic.
I am not even sure about the debate about free will, or that all in the universe is ordered and structured. String theory and quantum mechanics all point that if you take enough data, patterns and trends tend to appear within the space, free will doesn’t exist. In religion, and with the reality of “what is love” if you don’t’ have free will or a choice to actually love – it isn’t really love, is it?
Through history, religion has tried to make man better by a belief that there is more to this life and universe, we just can’t see or really it with facts that will satisfy the minds of science, which is ironic, as what man believes about science has changed so dramatically in a few thousand years, although, the guy who invented the wheel would be happy today to see his work in use.
I often wonder where will we go after our time here? Or, are we no different than a simple species that dies out and goes extinct in a relatively short moment in universal time. The cockroach and alligator surpass humanity in this area.
From a religious standpoint, I see man changing and moving religions over time. What I find interesting is that 15 billion years ago something happened. Did the grand plan for the universe actually change? Or is man simply changing his reality to fit what he can see.
I guess the moment you say, “I know how it all works” it the moment you might want to consider looking up the definition of delusion in the dictionary.
Today, what is reality? I can only answer on a personal level, either I am an idiot for having such trouble with languages, yet, I might be brilliant by seeing the various parts or at least having an idea where they might be in the unseen world and maybe one day will have the solution to allow other men to see further. You know, a genius.
I am a bit of both. That is my reality. My wife is the first to tell you I excel as an idiot and laugh heartily if you say, “Mark is a genius.”