Wednesday, April 10, 2013

The One Pause

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A good friend and mentor of mine often talks about "the one pause." It is something that is so seemingly simple, yet it can have a profound impact on our life interactions. So often in life we are blown to and fro by the winds of our emotions, our instant reactions to everything that comes at us day to day. But to find a small measure of peace in our minds, and in our worlds, he explains how important it is to be able to sometimes step back for a moment.

 Rather than being chained to our habitual ways of thinking and reacting, by introducing a single pause before responding, that silence can bring a clarity of vision that we otherwise might not be capable of. I picked up and old Yashica 635 that belonged to my father-in-law and loaded it up with some expired film, to test it out for an upcoming project I'm going to hopefully work on. It's mechanics and way of shooting are very different than what I'm accustomed to. It in some ways made me feel like a beginner again.

 So as I used this roll of film to learn the workings of the camera, I also used it as an exercise in slowing down. The medium itself dictates you do just that. You can't motor-drive a bunch of shots and hope you get something good. You meter the light, and get one shot before the moment is gone forever. This change helped me refresh my appreciation for what a great life photography has given me thus far.

 I have a wonderful wife, a vibrant community to work in and more comforts and security than the majority of people on this planet. By slowing down while making these pictures, I found it was easier to connect with what was in front of my camera. It brought me back to the most basic reason I fell in love with photography in the first place -  it offers us the opportunity to seek out beauty in the world and share that with others. While these images are very simple, and not technically perfect, they represent a much-needed reminder of how lucky I am to be doing what I love every day. All it takes is one pause. 

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Freelance photographer based in Columbia, MO.

I received my master's degree in photojournalism from the University of Missouri.

You can find me on Twitter under the username hawkryger if you're into that sort of thing.

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