warning: many words coming up. feel free to skip the soliloquy, and head straight to the pictures.
Why. It’s a question I get asked a few hundred times a day. That’s what I get for having a five year old (and a four year old). And it gets pretty deep.
Zevi: “Why did you go through the alley?”
Me: “You’re not allowed to make a left onto Linden from Carson”.
“How do you know?”
“Well, there’s no turning lane and a “no left turn” sign”.
“Well, they don’t want people using Linden instead of Atlantic”
“Why would someone do that”
“Sometimes Atlantic has a lot of traffic, so people want to use the side streets.”
“The people that live on Linden don’t want people driving fast down their street.”
“But what about the people that live on Linden, won’t they drive fast?”
“No, Zevi people that live here understand that they shouldn’t drive fast on their own block.”
And the conversation would have gone on, but we got arrived home (thank G-d).
See what happened? From a few innocent “why’s” we got to one of the main principles behind the free market and private prooperty.
But as we age, we sometimes (pretty much always) forget to ask why and just do things because “that’s what we do”.
Every “what” has a “why” behind it. And that “why” turn into another “what” with its very own “why”. And that goes on. an on. For a very long time.
In Kabballah this is refered to as a body and a soul. Even souls have a body and a soul.
When I first started documenting my family I was obsessed with “beautiful shots”. You know, the close up portraits with beautiful blurred out backgrounds.
After some time, it occured to me that while I had many photos of what my kids looked like, I didn’t really know what to do with them. And even worse I was finding that while they contained beautiful faces, looking at them they didn’t really contain many memories.
So the why question reared its beautiful head and had me thinking for a bit (doesn't happen very often). Why am I taking all these photos? Ten years down the line what kind of photos do I want to look at. I’d like to say it was an epiphany, but the process took some time (and is still going on).
I want memories. I want photos that bring me back to the moment captured, that remind me of not what my kids looked like but what they acted like. How they interacted. The cute/annoying things they do. Their little idiosyncracies that make them such individuals.
I still want beautiful photos, but not for prettiness sake. More to remember how beautiful my life is. How lucky I am to be given the gift of raising these little people. How amazingly beautiful and kind my wife is.
And I want to do this for other people as well. These are the photos that really matter. Yeah, I could make you and your family look like rockstars, with awesome backdrops and beautiful lighting. But down the line what do you want to remember? Do you want to sit down with your grandkids and look at an album of their parents? Of how they were as kids, how they got dirty, what they ate, how they ate? What they wore (not for a photoshoot, but what they wore every day), and how they played?
These were all taken three days before Pesach. Yeah, the lighting isn't perfect and no one is looking at the camera and smiling. But why would I want that? (Well, maybe once in a while:))
Geekery: All shot on Arista Edu 100 (el cheapo film), developed through Walmart (yeah, I know I chewed them out here, but they're okay for some film) and scanned by me. Random fact: Instead of searching my website for a post, I usually just google my name and some words I know are in that post. So for that previous link I searched: Zalmy Walmart, and got this.They name laptop coolers after me, I'm that cool.