[11 July 2009]
I mentioned in my last post “Hell, I have a great shot of a bird sitting alone in a rice field when my train stopped on the tracks just outside of Narita station. It’s an amazingly good shot . . .”
Just in case anyone would be tempted to think that I have the flair for exaggeration, or possibly, a lack of objectivity and perspective when it comes to things myself and my work . . . well, judge for yourselves.
More fantastic, first rate photography to follow . . . bank on it!
But seriously, after thirty years of on-and-off shutterduggery, I understand my limitations. Since I don’t work on my craft every day, I am a victim of happenstance: about three parts opportunity, two parts recognition, one part initiative, three parts finger-brain coordination, and the rest . . . luck!
The train had to stop in that particular place on the tracks—just opposite a rice paddy, fronting an up-cropping of fir trees—I had to make the effort to paw the camera from my bag, the train chugging from the opposite direction had to delay just that long, the lighting and wind and bird all had to cooperate. It also helped that the farmers had lined their rice up in those neat rows and that the blades had poked through the soil to that height, in that lush coloration—a string a if-thens, a chain of “only ifs . . .”
Like life, itself.
As I say, I have a modest, but ever-accreting assortment of such serendipitous moments (some of which I have posted here), but certainly far fewer than those who are committed full-time to rendering the surrounding world to digital imagery.
It is satisfying when all the factors move toward synchronicity, but, viewed from the other direction, relatively rare when they do. Alas.
Which is why it is a good thing in conversations like this to have been born an optimist.