Monday, December 23, 2013

Couple Lunching: Just Another Ordinary Moment?

Couple Lunching by Pauls-Pictures

Couple Lunching, a photo by Pauls-Pictures on Flickr.
Yes it is, isn't it? An ordinary moment I mean. Mind you, eating lunch can be serous business. At least these two are really into it in a serious way.
But, yes it is an ordinary moment. Or, as I have often said or written: a "so-called ordinary moment".
In reality it is a rather special moment. I mean by this that it is a moment that, had it not been for me passing by with my camera, would not have been noticed (by anyone at all really), would be soon forgotten (by these two as they rushed away after their clearly hurried lunch break), and would certainly have gone unrecorded.
Of course it is not simply the act of recording a moment that makes it special. But look at this photo more closely. Who are these people? What is going on? Why do they seem so serious? Are they as alienated from each other as the photo suggests? Or are they just really hungry or in a hurry? And, where are they? What are they doing there? (aside from eating that is).
Questions, questions, questions. And, to be honest, there are, nor will there ever be, any answers we will ever be able to provide for these questions.
And, that is just one of the beautiful and interesting things about this photograph (and about street and social documentary photography as a whole). We are witnesses to a mere slither of time in the lives of this couple (if they are in fact a couple. Another question). In that sense we have been able to share that little slice of life with them.
And it is this that is such an honour, such a privilege for me, and for you the viewer. A connection has been made; a connection that will always be there at some level and to some degree for me and for all of you who view this photograph.
It's a bringing together really, don't you think? A joining of souls, a unification of me, these two people eating lunch, and you, the viewer.
This is the point of what I do as an artist. And I am grateful

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