I started this blog to express my own feelings and emotions through photography. I wrote regularly on this blog to send my thoughts out to what I considered an “anonymous” world. Street shooting has been my passion and continues to hold my attention. But something happened along the way; my time has been occupied with the demands of my professional work, primarily working with those involved in the arts.
As all of us know “arts” is a subject that is always the first to go in our schools. It is often viewed as an unnecessary subject, easily replaced and in some ways “frivolous” to other more important subjects. I am priviledged to witness the effect of “frivolous” art on a regular basis. From BBoy to the San Francisco Ballet to a Nationally Acclaimed theatre company to musicians and those who are destined to become legendary. So many schools talk of sports and the need to keep young people off the streets. This is just as true for the arts, where individuals who may not ‘fit in’ find a voice through music or dance.
Society gives much lip service in the US toward education, yet we utter hollow words when it comes to funding our schools and the future of our society. Reality TV and fast foods dominate the fabric of what we have become and those pursuits which require discipline and self-sacrifice are ideas which seem outdated in our culture. The clamoring for attention in a sound bite world deafens the voices who aspire to pursuits substance. We know more about the failures of those who have achieved perceived fame than of those close to us. It goes on and on.
What my immersion into the arts has shown me is how discipline and self sacrifice forms its own camaraderie and community. Like minded individuals gather, share and collaborate to build something much larger than themselves. Yes, as individuals they gain satisfaction from their individual contributions, but it is the totality of the whole that takes precedence over all other elements. Being part of their art is perhaps the largest fortune I could ever hope to gain, their passion and enthusiasm for their craft fuels my desire to be part of that community regardless of the genre. Passion and commitment are blind to the artistic vehicle, they simply exist to fuel improvement and that elusive moment of artistic perfection.
And in the end, isn’t how we’ve lived out our dreams the most important aspect of who we’ve become?