Headshot, portrait, street and documentary photographer in NYC and Jersey City

alastair.arthur@gmail.com

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Slipping Too Quickly Into 2020

Didn't it seem like Christmas came and went so quickly? And the new year, and that’s a decade gone, done, without so much as a goodbye.

I was just recently thinking about how I documented the holiday time with family, what photos I took. And I really didn’t do it as well or as comprehensively as I'd hoped or planned. I took a fair number of pictures but sporadically, when we were out doing stuff, at the times that were the more 'photographically obvious'. But it's the less obvious that I really want to photograph more. The standard stuff. But life and distractions and cake keep getting in the way and I forget. I probably need to set a ‘grab that camera again’ reminder for every 30 minutes.

Taking a photo doesn’t stop the time slipping away, but so often moments rush past undocumented. Often that's ok, often it's a shame. Not a moment lost if it's well lived, but sometimes there’s an opportunity missed, that the moment might be more held on to and more easily cherished and remembered. Not lost in time, just lost somewhere in Apple Photos instead.


"the passage of time has the ability to completely erase things from your memory. And what you're left with is simply what's in the photograph. Whatever it is that you thought you were capturing on the negative the instant you pressed the shutter button - it doesn't take long for that to slip from your mind."

- Daido Moriyama, How I Take Photographs

One idea I've tried and will do again, is to document all of a day. Hold a camera (or maybe a phone) nearly all the time. To look for moments constantly. I often wonder what it's like for the YouTubers, the vloggers whose experience if often punctuated by the extra load of filming. Carrying the gear, setting up, staging, re-takes, packing up, editing. In comparison, a small film camera seems minor.

Anyway, I didn't do a review of the decade. I’m sure I can remember what was going on 10 years ago except that we were in England, in our own (the bank may disagree) house with our own cars and our own new cat. Now we borrow more of the stuff when we need it, but at least the cat loan is paid off, bless him.

I didn’t even manage to pick out my favorite images of 2019 over the holidays. Instead I was trying to be more present, more focused on relationships over the holiday. Unfortunately that didn’t go so well, but was worth a try. Maybe I've got to used to be half distracted by technology all the time, phone in hand. I am though trawling back through my photo catalogue so maybe I’ll post a few ‘greatest hits’ of the decade sometime. For now though, late to the party but what’s the rush anyhow, a few 2019 favorites:






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