Living in the Moment

The Vacation
by Wendell Berry

Once there was a man who filmed his vacation.
He went flying down the river in his boat
with his video camera to his eye, making
a moving picture of the moving river
upon which his sleek boat moved swiftly
toward the end of his vacation. He showed
his vacation to his camera, which pictured it,
preserving it forever: the river, the trees,
the sky, the light, the bow of his rushing boat
behind which he stood with his camera
preserving his vacation even as he was having it
so that after he had had it he would still
have it. It would be there. With a flick
of a switch, there it would be. But he
would not be in it. He would never be in it.

Ever since my husband, Jarrod, read this poem to me I've challenged myself to live on the other side of the camera. It's been hard. Really, really hard. I felt like I would lose my memories.

I started small. I didn't take my iPhone to the park with me. I enjoyed having my hands free to climb with Cadence. I shared the moment with her instead of documenting it.

I will never stop taking photographs.

I love taking photos, editing photos & sharing photos. However my relationship with my photos needed to change. The mountains of photos are controlling me & I need to control them.

I began to challenge myself to focus on storytelling with my photography instead of using it to preserve a random memory. To keep myself accountable I joined Instagram. Once I joined I started following some amazing photographers for inspiration. And now I've been purposely posting my Instagram photos with words to create a one frame story.

I may not end up with a picture of Gavin's first time in a swing, but I will be there. And then the second time I'll be there camera in hand.

Follow my stories @jessiemariestudio on Instagram.

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