kyle cassidy (kylecassidy) wrote,
kyle cassidy

  • Music:

a keeper of memories

One thing about being a photographer, or a videomaker or a diarist, is that you become the keeper of memories. Things that pass from other people's minds are still in your files, your shoe boxes, your negative bins your notebooks -- those ordinary moments preserved with a clarity and when things happen, they're there to remind you and to make that day live again.

I have a lot of new friends here who may not know this, so I'll recap a bit -- a few years back I did an award winning documentary photography book on American gun owners. One of the up-sides of spending two years running around photographing people is that you get to see a lot of places and meet a lot of people. And one of the down sides, is that you suddenly know three hundred more people and three score more animals than you did when you started out and one by one you get to hear that they've died.

Fleming was, I think without a doubt, the most articulate person in the book. Both he and his wife were witty, and kind and delightful and their photo was always one of the most popular -- it was certainly my favorite in the whole book. (You can read their entry here.)

I was surprised to hear today that he'd died suddenly. An infection set in after routine surgery and the world is a little poorer for his passing.

But because you're a photographer, or a videomaker, or a diarist, or a poet or a novelist, you've captured a little bit of what they were, so that not everything is gone -- there's a little bit of an echo in an empty room that gives a faint impression of the sound of their voice, their walk, their smile -- and that's all that everyone else has, and for that, you feel proud, and you keep on; keep on writing, recording, saving, archiving, scribbling, because you're the keeper of memories and the world is getting away from you.


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