1. When you get to your soul
There is something about this picture that I find interesting. It’s not her eyes, not her posture, not her mouth, but all of them together: the facial expression in totality that makes me wonder what she’s looking at it. Remember the mysterious smile of La Giaconda that Da Vinci painted into the ‘Mona Lisa’? It’s like one of those things, except that we knew La Giaconda was hiding something – that was a taunting smile; it made you question with reprieve as to what she was hiding. The painting, with the subdued background, made us all look into her face. Anyone today can pick the original out of a line up; the smile made it difficult to duplicate. But here, what is this lady saying? Does she want us to look somewhere? Or is she thinking? If so, then what is she thinking about? Notice the expectation in her eyes, so easily mistaken for surprise and vice versa. With the Lisa, you knew she was hiding something, even if nothing at all. But the silence in this picture is stifling. I don’t know what to question; all I know is I want the answer.
2. Sacred trees
With the ‘sacred trees’, I feel a pervading and calming silence. We all know how the flora around is silent, nonchalantly minding their own business without ever being bothered about what we humans are up to. This picture, in my opinion, brings that aspect forth in a manner that commands not respect but reverence. I think it shows how Mother Nature has risen above all else and still continues to be the primary and most fundamental of our beginnings. It is a reminder that in the end, we are Her children, and that she will always be there when we need her. The smooth and silent mist at the bottom of the picture point toward the innocence and naivety we all come into the world with, and the top, the turbulence with which we leave.
With ‘Reflections’, I tend to see the duality that is omnipresent in this universe, in everything living and dead, in everything deniable and undeniable. Even if we choose to refuse that it exists, we inadvertently become a part of it: we are now one side of the coin, the other side of which has chosen to agree with the existence of that duality. Everything that we see around us effectively boils down to this duality. Again, you either agree or disagree. Drifting away from the cliche of the clouds with silver lining, this photograph gives additional meaning to every decision we make and face. This picture is a simple reminder that everything you believe in does not constitute everything you will come to know. There will always be more; more in good, more in evil.
4. Child’s play
‘Child’s play’ is a wonderful little photograph that speaks naught of the troubles in this world, but the little kicks hidden folded away between the seconds and minutes of our lives. As much as the day’s worries cloud our thoughts toward the night, there are those little things around us that make our efforts worthwhile. Joy need not always stem from exhilarating roller coaster rides or that promotion you’ve been hoping for at work. It can also come from doing those things that you’ve always wanted to do but thought you never had the time to do it. Turns out, it’s always a good time.
5. Pandhof again
‘Pandhof again’ is the ideal metaphor of the ideal mind: free and open, sure of its position and place in this world, unmindful of the criticism and cynicism, listening to only that which sheds light on itself and the person it has chosen to accompany on the never-ending quest for knowledge and enlightenment, willingly subdued by experience, desperately ignoring the darkness that ceaselessly threatens it. Life is such, and those who call themselves ‘rebels’ or those who call themselves ‘subdued’, are in fact not so. They must understand that such ideas are only superficial, they will only serve you for a short time as to orient you somewhere. After that, it is all you. If you have an open mind, you will see that things don’t fall in their place – they are already there. And waiting for you to be.
I don’t know if these pictures were shot with specific intentions or imagery in mind. It could be possible that they were shot in passing, or just because they were beautiful. What I’ve said above need not be true; in such cases, there is no absolute truth. There will be a million different interpretations, and they will all be true. It’s just what you see in them.