Whenever I tell people that I take pictures for a living, they ask me, “What do you photograph?”. I have the same answer every time for them, “I photograph humans”.
I started taking photos when my age was still a single digit, when the world felt huge and didn’t have just seven wonders, it had seven million wonders. Perhaps none of those was more wonderful than the first camera I picked up.
It was a Polaroid SX-70. It folded up into itself like a cross between a snail and a book. It’s leather exterior felt like a well used baseball glove, and when you popped it open, it sprung into action like the top hat of a magician. It had a shiny red shutter release that was color of a freshly washed fire engine. I remember the first time I pushed the button, and time stopped dead in its tracks. It was my first taste of magic. I’ve been chasing that magic ever since.
I photograph a lot of grown-ups and I love doing it. I don’t photograph little ones very often; you could certainly find a photographer who does ONLY that. Perhaps they will take beautiful photos of your children. I don’t really want to take “beautiful photos of your children”. I want to interact with your children, get down on the ground with them, dig my hands into the dirt and smell the grass with them, discover flowers with them, and while I’m doing this, I want to record it with my camera. For you. And mostly for them, when you are gone, and they hold the photograph I took, in memory of you. How do I know they will do this? Because I am an orphan, who had miracle parents, who are both dead. And when I get so sad I feel my heart will crack, I cling to the photos they took of me as a little one, and I feel them on the other end. I hold onto those precious photos like a life-raft, and when they stare back at me, I am in a time machine. My camera is a time machine. All cameras are time machines, I just happen to be a doctor who knows how to use press the buttons better than most.
If you’d like me to record your tiny ones, with my tiny time machine, now would be a good time to get in touch.
I hope you do, what better time than summer, to play?
“Hold summer in your hand, pour summer in a glass, a tiny glass of course, the smallest tingling sip, for children; change the season in your veins by raising glass to lip and tilting summer in.”
― Ray Bradbury