When we are long gone, the only things that remain are the memories people have, the legacies we have left behind, and the images that have been captured.
The memory lives vividly in the crevases of my thoughts as if it happened yesterday. I was nine years old, loitering on the porch of my house with my mom. As she sat there, I tried to draw her face in my sketchbook. I was not very good, so the result was not what I was hoping for, but I kept trying. I traced the lines of her face with my pencil and attempted to capture every detail I could see. I never succeeded in my goal. It was just never quite right in my eyes (the curse of a perfectionist). Two months before my eleventh birthday, my mom was in a car accident and she died. I think the reason that memory stays with me is because, in all of my nine years of expertise, I saw the importance of catching that moment before it vanished. It is long gone now and all I have is the memory. I do not even have the drawing.
I love photography. I have loved it my entire life. When I was seventeen, I declared that one day I would be a photographer (along with five other things I was convinced I would have time for). It wasn't until I was much older that I realized the importance of images. I do not have a good photograph of my mother. There is not a good quality one that exists that catches her as she truely was - one that, when you look at it, you see the kind of person she was. The adventure in her eyes, the passion in her smile and the freedom in her soul.
When we are long gone, the only things that remain are the memories people have, the legacies we have left behind, and the images that have been captured. I don't want anyone else to have to dig through boxes of old pictures to find one image that they can cherish of those they love, only to come up empty. That is why I do what I do.