Monday, December 17, 2007

Five second beautiful scene

Often the photos I don't take form a more lasting memory than the ones I do take. As I write this a scene from yesterday is burned into my mind. I was at a flea market half holiday shopping and half shooting photos. I turned down an aisle and the most natural beautiful shot was right before me. Two women were crouched over a counter showing an item to a potential customer. Their hands were laid before them but woven together so you couldn't tell which hands belonged to whom. The customer was carrying a box with a strange abstract design that matched their hands. If I'd shot it in black and white the effect would've been even more interesting, the confusion increased. I didn't need to move at all, the scene was right there for the taking. But for some reason I still can't figure out I didn't shoot the photo. Perhaps it seemed too transitory, like the scene would only last a moment and would likely disappear the moment I put my camera to my face. Perhaps I got a case of stage fright, afraid they would question me. Whatever it was, instead of taking the photo I just stood there transfixed as the moment lasted one...two...three...four...five seconds. Plenty of time, had I acted. After they moved their hands apart and I'd gone away I thought about that scene the rest of the day. I thought about it much more than if I'd taken the photo.

1 comment:

plechl said...

i think sometimes this happens because even though we have trained ourselves to react with the camera we still sometimes react as human beings. we see something strange or beautiful and we are just struck dumb or frozen with awe...even for five seconds. perhaps these images are so burned into the memory because rather than seen through the filter of the camera, they are taken in with all the senses and thus remembered the same way.