Thursday, October 21, 2010

I have IAN disorder.

I have Internally Audible Narrative disorder.
I really do.
I don't know if I should be alarmed or not
but that's just the way I think.
No matter what the situation,
I'm thinking in a narrative 90% of the time.
Take for instance a potentially
emotional event like
the first day of school for your last child.
This is what plays in my head
as I walk Bren to class the first day,
"Her little heart pounds as she enters the classroom
for the first time.
she has been the new girl so often in her
young life,
but she never gets used to it.
She is thankful that her mom is with her
and gives her hand a squeeze.
As the goodbye nears, her grip gets tighter,
but she fights back
the tears welling up in her
big green eyes and
puts on a brave face.
One quick embrace and she's on her own."
If I try hard enough,
I can even hear the music
playing in the background
begging every last drop of emotion out of the scene!
Is that normal?
It's like I'm living in the moment,
(really, I am!)
but I'm preparing to retell it on demand
in a way that puts people right in my shoes.
It's sorta like a tool for me to grab
a hold of every emotion happening
in and around me
and organize them into a flow of words
so that I won't forget it.
Should I seek help?
Wait there's more....
I also think this way about important
or meaningful future events.
I will anticipate it in story form.
Like right now,
I am anticipating the arrival of
my oldest son
who will be here for 10 days in November.
I will admit to this narrative,
"Her fingers moved over the plates
as she pulled them out of the drawer.
Six again.
Always six.
She still hadn't gotten used to
just pulling out five.
But soon six will be the right number again.
For a little while anyway."
before you campaign to have me admitted
to the funny-farm,
let me further explain......
It's not like a detached male voice
like the movie trailer voice over guy
and it's not like everytime I go grocery shopping
I'm hearing,
"List in hand, she walks into the store
headed straight for the frozen food section
to gather meat for her starving family!"
It's not that bad yet.
Please tell me I am not the weirdest person you know.
Perhaps I am subconsciously preparing
to write an award winning epic novel.
Perhaps I drink too much caffeine.
It could be that I've dyed my hair one too many times
or that I need more fiber in my diet.
Whatever the cause,
I think this abnormality
may actually help me
in the things I do.
Take photography for example.
When I drive by a wall with peeling paint,
an old weathered barn,
abandoned buildings with vines growing on the walls,
brightly colored doors,
unique staircases
or quaint side streets,
This is what happens to my soul...
well, first I squeal and almost
drive off the road,
but then
I automatically place a person there
whether it be
a bride with a flowing vail,
a family,
a little girl in a tu-tu
or even a tiny newborn
and I create a photo in my mind
that tells the story of the scene that
has distracted me enough to risk fatal injury.
I don't necessarily hear a narrative,
ok well, sometimes I do,
but it's more like the components of a
story yet to be told.
I may never actually get to shoot the
photograph that my mind insist must happen
because the location could be inaccessible
(without colossal effort)
and I don't currently know any brides
plus I doubt anyone would let me
put their tiny little newborn on a dirty
brick and weathered wood window sill
of a mental hospital.
But whether it happens or not
doesn't matter.
The fact is that the scene haunts me
everytime I pass the spot
and is very possibly responsible for fueling my
photo session location choices
and shooting style.
I love to put newness next to broken down,
clean next to dirty
and softness next to hardness.
I think that creating that contrast makes the
most interesting story.
During my sessions,
I find that I am trying to create that
contrast as often as I can
without risking bodily injury
of course.
Here are a few examples
from my most recent sessions
and how "IAN"
transfers to my
photo vision.

This one was just way too easy!
This turquoise grocery cart was sitting off to the side of this wall
just waiting to be filled with little girls
in petticoats!

This was my clients idea,
but fits in very well with my style.
Pink bare feet with rolled up jeans
on hard concrete steps,
yup...right up my alley!

Brightly colored doors....I just had to shoot here!

More colored doors
with an urban feel.

Another cool door,
a little gothic looking.
A ruffled little girl and a kiss
was the perfect way to go.

As soon as I saw this rusted metal wall
I knew exactly what I was gonna do with it
and it turned out to be one of my favorite shots of the shoot.
Thanks IAN!

It took a few shots to get the "mood" I wanted
for this couple,
but I got it.
When I shoot couples,
I try to create an emotion with the photo.
Sometimes I want it to be smoldering
and sexy,
other times I'm just after fun!
I want the photos to tell the story of them.
(without disembodied voices)

I've always wanted to do a "cafe shot"
and alas, we happened upon a table and chairs.

What else could you do with a brick
alley way
except maybe put a newborn in a basket
right in the middle of it?

There's the old wall with the vine growing
on it. More couple love stories!

This staircase
was made for these two!
There's a whole story in my mind
about the boy in the blue shoes
and his ruffly little sister.

I have driven past this old staircase
several times since we've lived here
and I always saw two little girls on it.
Just my luck that
I had two little clients with me
when shooting at this location.

The rusted out wall again.
It's the perfect compliment to her

Who can resist
the giggles of little kids?
Place it up against a weathered trailor
and it's magic to me.

This is one of my new favorite locations.
It is an old abandoned store with the
most fabulous peeling blue paint.
It makes my pink rug pop
and showcases another giggly girl

I know this isn't rocket science
and I'm not the most creative person alive,
although I might just be the craziest,
but I just thought you might
enjoy a little peek into what goes on
inside my brain when
I pick my locations and backgrounds.
And as for that little abnormality I have?
I'm just going to embrace IAN
and call it what it is...
voices inside my head!