Sunday, November 28, 2010

Wonder of the Everyday

Everyday assignments can be filled with wonder, but only if you put yourself in the right frame of mind. I've been working full force on "While You Were Gone," and I find myself conserving my energy a little just to make it through these crazy past weeks. Babies are being born, or adopted, people are calling me with new stories, and just as I feel like I'm in the full swing of it, I see the end of the project looming, at least according to the timeline of the paper. How will I ever get it all done? Sometimes anything other than this project feels like an intrusion, a distraction, though daily assignments are why I have the luxury to work on this project in the first place. I've gotten good at making clean, pleasing pictures fast, so I can spend hours with my military families, but that's not always the ideal way to work.

I took a few hours the other day to linger at an assignment-- to talk, to sit, to see, to listen and to make a few pictures. He is 94, a veteran of Pearl Harbor and a long-time resident of Portsmouth, Va. who was planning to make a pecan pie that afternoon. Oh, I wanted to stay, but other assignments called for my attention. Daily work-- the routine of it, the fresh chance every day to make something beautiful out of the world around you-- makes me thankful to be a newspaper photographer, even if I'm feeling a little crazy these days.

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