Monday, October 22, 2007

Inspiration by image

I am most moved by beautiful words, though increasingly I am also impressed with images, especially when those images are taken to create a narrative. Last week, I watched Pop!Tech ( on-line as the conference was streamed completely free by Yahoo. One of the speakers was Jonathan Harris, a photographer who lives in New York City. He built a photographic narrative of a whale hunt in Alaska. The candence of his picture taking mirrored the level of excitement, energy, and the beat of his heart during the hunt. Quite an incredible idea, and the pictures tell the story better than I think any words could do.

His talk made me realize there is a time for tell and a time for show. That art and its creation can and should be inextricably linked to the body and to the world around us. Pictures can contain energy, they live, they breathe. There is something to be said for great story telling, for capturing moments in time and then paginating them to form a continuous stream.

In my lifetime, it is likely that I will never be able to experience a traditional, subsistence whale hunt, or any other countless journeys that Jonathan takes us on. I'm sure glad he has his camera so that I can relive pieces of those spectacular scenes.

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