“Expressive photographers sometimes like to claim that photographs are “visual thinking that does not require any words.” Indeed the old guard still write very little about their photographs. It seems to me they are saying 1/125 of a second is enough to convey meaningful depth to any given scenario. I never understood that. That is probably why i am not a photographer …
In a shoot last month with Danwatch where I was photographing people who work in a very hazardous industry, this woman came out of her small shack and stared at me. I thought at first perhaps reproachfully. She had probably seen that the DanWatch team were interviewing workers.
I tried to defuse the situation by saying “May I take a photograph?”
She agreed. And asked “Don’t you want to hear my story too?” The widow proceeded to tell me a desperate story of life after the death of her husband two years ago, and how difficult it has been to care for her kids without any support. She told me “No woman has known grief like me.”
I will never meet her again. I will never know how her story unfolds. But I took a snapshot of her in 1/50 of a second.”