Photo Stories: Powerful Contrasts

Mortality is about contrasts. We are here to experience them. 

I love powerful contrasts. Light and shadow. Fast and slow. Up and down. Happy and Sad. Well, maybe not “sad”.

Andrew’s mother remembered the bags of birdseed. She had been to the park before. I’ll bet you can hear the birds as they softly coo. I can. I am reminded that children learn what to expect from animals and birds by being around them. If I was playing “what do you think happened next?” I would expect to see and hear Andrew’s little brother running towards the birds with his arms flying to watch them lift into the sky.

Having been the mother of little boys myself, I remembered scenes just like this one so I mentally crossed my fingers that Andrew would get his fill of feeding the birds before they were chased into the sky.


Contrast is emotional.

Light and shadow can be warm or cool. What we feel when we look at a photograph is important. If I had the time and space I could tell a whole story about this photograph. Since we never know where a photograph will be in 50 years, we hope that we have given our descendants enough information to connect to it. Olive’s name should be on the back of course, and the date and place and if there is room, the “why” or “what”.

Beyond those things is a knowledge of whose graves we are tending and why. How we came to know the people in them and how long they have been resting there. It is part of the story to know that we are the only connected family to visit the graves and care for them. One grave is left in the family plot of Samuel Crawford Pancake and it now belongs to his great great grandson, Tom.

Photo Stories are the best kind and that is why the saying goes that
“a picture is worth a thousand words”.
It is true but don’t forget to add the words.


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