As I get more and more into my photography, part of that is studying the work of others and simply lusting after what they’ve captured. I’m in love with people’s faces, with moments, with journalistic work. So how does an extrovert, who prefers to be IN the moment, capture the moment?
This has been my biggest learning curve over the last 2 months as portrait shots were left behind and I jumped on a plane to travel Asia for the next year. I’ve had to really own my role as a photographer, and challenge myself to see ‘moments’ in a new way. I’ve had to learn to set aside the embarrassment of pulling out a camera in intimate settings, and learn to fade into the background in order to allow the moment to remain untouched while still capturing it.
Now, as an extrovert, this can be difficult to do! For instance, visiting an orphanage in northern Thailand, I was hot and sweaty at the end of the day from running around and taking pictures, while my students were hot and sweaty from playing with kids. Or take dinner in the village. While I’m loving running around and capturing the quirks of village gourmet eating, my co-workers are seated nicely on the floor of our hosts home, waiting patiently for dinner to be served. And this is my dilemma: what to do when I want to capture the moment, and also experience the moment. But perhaps this is the dilemma of every good photographer (here’s to hoping I’m on to something). Perhaps part of capturing is the art of participating in the moment from behind the camera to the point that the camera fades away.
Whatever it is, I thought I’d do a little ode to those that I love, and often find themselves the focus of my camera at gatherings. Let’s just say there’s no other moments I’d rather capture than the ones that mean the world to me. 🙂