Being alone is, for me, a necessary condition for slow, deliberate photography.
Although there are some people that I can happily walk with (well, one or two if I’m honest), walking with photography in mind is a different beast entirely, and is best practiced alone.
Alone offers the space and most importantly time: to mooch and meander, to notice without aim, to bend down, shuffle round or lie down on the warm earth, to watch and gasp in wonder without needing to explain why you’re taking so long, and what it is you’re looking at when there’s nothing apparently to see.
This kind of aloneness, walking with camera in hand, is, for me, a gift, and probably the main reason I am hooked on the practice of photography.
It is not just time out, but also time in: to really notice, to appreciate and wonder and connect, to be alone to be reminded, over and over, that you are not.
Reflections on being alone, as part of a new project sharing photographs based on a single word (a word a week, from David Whyte’s book Consolations). The word this week was alone. More on the project from the announcement post by Kim Manley Ort.