Recently I realized a pattern whereby I take pictures of various subjects in mid-air, and it got me to thinking.
This was the first mid-air shot, which I took during the same restaurant festival that triggered the worst craving I’ve had for a drink in some time. Which? Passed as quickly as it came and seemed to take with it a general preoccupation with drinking I’d carried for some time. Go away, cravings, you have no power here.
This was the second mid-air shot I took at another festival a month or so later. They were putting on some bike stunt show and I whipped out my phone at the very beginning and got this shot and then put my phone back in my pocket so I could watch the show in real time instead of hours later on my phone screen, which I used to do before.
This led me to realize:
1) I go to a lot of festivals.
2) I am putting away my phone more and being rewarded with fluke shots I never would have been able to capture before. (I’m not saying these pictures would win any awards, they just make me happy to look at, and isn’t that what amateur photography is all about?)
3) I can relate a lot to the suspended state of these subjects.
Maybe it’s because I was there to see the ballerina land gracefully or the bike dude land, not so much gracefully as spectacularly, but I don’t concern myself with what happened before or after these moments. It doesn’t matter how they got there or what they do next – the moment we see is perfect and beautiful.
This was my favorite and most recent mid-air shot. It’s my kid jumping into a pile of leaves my husband carefully raked before Hurricane Sandy rolled in and blew them plus many others across the lawn. I wasn’t in a particularly good mood the day this was taken. I’m human and sometimes I get suspended in a state of funk or fuck you. Usually I get this way when I’m dwelling on something that already happened or might possibly happen in the future. This all feels very normal and inevitable and I’m not about to beat myself up over it. The moment passes and life changes, hopefully for the better.
I like this picture, though, because even though it might always remind me of the way I felt at the time, it captures a perfect moment of childhood. It makes me smell the sweet rot of leaves and feel the prickle against my face and in my hair. It makes me think of all those times in childhood I got to jump in the leaves, also completely (sweetly) oblivious to the number of spiders probably contained therein.
Is there any sweeter joy than being truly happy and at peace with what you’re doing and who you’re with? There’s some faint feeling of hope about the future and peace about the past, but you can’t look closely for those or that perfect moment will vanish. Perfect present moments never last anyway (only on instagram), but it’s comforting to know they’re happening all around and when I’m slow and quiet, I might feel one for awhile.