Sagar came home, yesterday.
We don’t meet very often, but when we do meet, it is a time which we cherish. I am — clearly — taking the liberty to speak for both of us.
Every now and then we become complacent. We agree with ourselves that what we do is great, or at least good enough. We look at other people. We like their work, appreciate it. We think they are great; their work is great. Or at least good enough.
Then, Sagar comes home.
A conversation, that once happened between Seoul and Mumbai is remembered. We laugh about it. I have taken a few thousand photographs after that conversations; haven’t published. (I like the word published – makes me feel important and famous – all I really do, is post them to my Flickr Account or to my Facebook Page).
We have a short conversation about where we are with photography. Since I started publishing photographs, I have said:
I use a Film SLR (Canon EOS 88) and a DSLR (Canon EOS400D). Not very technically competent. Always face a problem, when I say I am a photographer. People talk about lenses and cameras and filters. I think photographers should discuss photographs. Haven’t yet found a photographer who talks photographs. I will.
I found Sagar.
I should, with due respect, mention Amit Phansalkar; he talks photographs. (Only, that Amit doesn’t call himself a photographer; as yet)
Instinctively, we learn by imitation. To copy something, and see it close to the original is a satisfying act. Within this act, is creation itself, even if it is not creative. If we were to discard the imitation of the act, and realise the creation, we could do much more. Then we make a small change. We do a what-if. We like it, and then we do more. We slowly come of age; but importantly, we come of identity. Then comes the body of work. Which gives rise to signature. Then, comes the complacency, I mentioned above.
Not that Self-assertion and Self-realisation are opposites, but that is the struggle.
Denying ourselves perspectives is denying growth. And how we offer ourselves perspectives is up to us. There are no templates, guidelines, rule-books, or formats; even though we are bombarded daily with 10-things lists. The lists have to be our own. And they may, quite curiously, contain just one list item.
We are not here to take photographs or see photographs. We are here to see, without a camera. [Paraphrased quote, by Dorothea Lange]
We’ll discover with each other, and in that, we will discover ourselves.