Condition of who we are meant to be
A lifetime ago I was an instructor at a university teaching public speaking and business communication. The students in those courses had to give some presentations. At the core were informative and persuasive presentations. Each of those presentations had a particular formula for what made a successful speech. As each student would get up in front of the room, we had a sheet with all the points they had to cover and the order they were to appear. Of course, as I got older and gave more and more presentations, I learned that the structure we forced on students was often not presented that way in the real world. Sure the concepts were important, but the forced structure was more of a hindrance.
As I got to packing the books for the move this week, I got to thinking about those presentations and how we look at photographs. We have talked at length about what makes a good photo and the types of images one can create. But, as I got to thinking more and more about the pictures in these books, I realized that the pictures and photo stories that mattered were ones that showed us the condition of who we are and who we are trying to become. As you look at your work and the world around you, I challenge you to try and come to a place where the issues, values, and ideals that matter to you are pushed into your work. If you care about sexism, racism, or the environment. Make it a point to have those ideas and stories in your work. It is in your willingness to push those concepts into your work that we as a society can move forward to create more meaningful work. And by that, I mean work that helps all of us to find common ground and understanding of the issues we all face.
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