Another friend passed the other day, cancer had decided to deliver it’s final judgement over twelve increasingly debilitating months. I knew it was close, I knew he had been transferred to a hospice, where one usually arrives with an understanding of whom it will be that will accompany you on your next journey. We were on holiday when a friend dispatched the terminal email, though the address was incorrect and we didn’t receive it. However I had discovered the news via a photograph. Roger’s daughter had posted a photograph of her with him on Facebook, both looking happy and healthy, no-one had yet offered a comment of commiseration, but it was clear by the single presence of a photograph that he had gone.
Walking in the woods with our grandchildren yesterday, in the hope that I might be able to make some more images to help form a direction for my BoW. I made just the one; a single frame of dappled light in a glade in the woods. The grandchildren were running amok, finding treasures, looking for monsters – the stuff of childhood when I saw the image and found a resonance. I made one image and it has sort of stuck.
I have strong feelings that for an image to work there has to be some sort of imbued emotion invested in the photograph, either in it’s inception or by how it emerges through editing into a body of work. I appreciate that when Roger’s image was made it was done at a time when the canker was thought to be beaten, a celebratory investment that turned sadly to become a memento mori. I am aware that by conflating these stories I am vesting an emotional response into these photographic images on the page. Is this what I should be doing? Is this how I will tell my stories?