yes yes parting is indeed sweet sorrow…..i am always amazed at the bonding and friendships which are built in just a week of working together with my students in these photographic workshops….and this morning we will all hug goodbye, promise to write , and all hope we meet again soonest….some students i will never see or hear from again…..but many stay in touch for years and we meet occassionally at photographic festivals like arles or perpignan or sometimes just random meetings in the street in some other part of the world…some stay friends for life…morning coffee for me in new york is answering student emails…….
right now all of us are totally sleep deprived but happy…..all of the Easter processions we photographed were approximately two hours from siracusa where we are based….sometimes we photographed all night long and slept in the car on the way home…..Easter monday we all slept on the beach but then had to drive back to siracusa and "crash edit" for our final music slide show which was shown publicly in a small amphitheater just off the piazza del duomo…such fun and so so rewarding……i will post some of their work as soon as possible..my internet connections and service here are a bit of a nightmare, but the food is great, the people are just the best, so only harveyblog suffers a bit….please see new post of some of my new student work under "student work/workshops"…
what has totally interested me my whole photographic life is exactly this bonding….i have always been curious why photographers seem to bond so well….photographers seem to truly enjoy making friends with each other…..most of my lifetime friendships are with photographers i met at an early age…my friend medford taylor and i met in grad school while scrambling to use the same darkroom at the same time…he says i nudged him out so that i could print!!…probably true….but he has put up with me ever since….in this same era, i met both jodi cobb and william albert allard (stories on both coming soon)….we have been friends for over 30 years….there is a long list of photographers who remain friends for years and years….this has surely been one of the joys of this business for me…..even this blog community is part of everything of which i speak….
but it does beg the question……why do photographers like to "hang" with each other????
few of my writer friends do the same…few of my friends on the "outside" have quite the comaraderie that we seem to have…hobbyists share interests, but we are professional competitors with each other…if bill allard or alex webb get a particular story it means that i do not….there is only so much funding and so many book publishers and so many grants and so many ad accounts to go around….you could imagine we would not even know each other or speak to each other, but the opposite is true…..
is it because only another photographer can relate to our strange egos, behavior patterns and the like?
is it because we are stimulated by another photographer doing great work rather than being possessive or jealous??? i do not have the answer…..i only know that this is generally true…and it is also true in our relationships with editors as well…..it would stand to reason that a photographer might strike up a postive relationship with an editor for a magazine for which he or she receives commissions….but i have so so many editor friends with whom i do no commissioned work and never will do commissioned work….for those who may doubt this , just show up in perpignan or arles or any workshop program you will see this comaraderie, this friendship, this common bond…..
out of the eight students i just had in this workshop, probably two of them will push forward in the world of documentary or art photography…..over the years i have seen some do magazine work, some have gallery shows, some publish books and some will enter the administrative side and become magazine editors or curators…..most will use their photographic work as a means of personal expression without becoming involved at all in any commercial ventures ….
i do believe in the "circle of life"….pay back, pay forward….however you want to view it…all i know is, i feel terrific right now about the past week…i hope all of my class feels the same…and i hope some of these new friends will look at this week’s "grand finale" as a beginning rather than an end…..