The arts are amongst the worst impacted by COVID-19, yes that word again. It has become the bane of our existence this past year and perhaps rightly so. Photography and the arts, however widely interpreted has been the search to the innate question of "why?" "Why do we exist? What is the meaning of this existence and how do we justify it?"
Photography for me has been particularly challenging this year, for reasons everyone can understand of course. Photography is about collaboration, its about communities of practice and artists working together to produce an influential, outspoken, colorful, dark, emotive, provocative piece of work. Its those moments surrounded by prints in the darkroom or the defining second where the artist decides which direction to pursue within the work, or the comment from peers that steers work down an entirely new journey joined with the artist on that path of discovery.
It is within these moments that the essence of Photography lies.
This however, is the challenge presented to us. How can you make portraits without anyone to photograph? How can you develop ideas without the opportunity to expand past your bubble? How can you portray the overwhelming intensity of the current situation without the ability to do so? Yet creating is who we are, apart of the essence of our being.
Ironically the statement that comes to mind is 'To boldly go where no man has gone before' - (Star Trek 1966). Ironic because of the inability to travel but more prevalent than ever. No man or woman has been in a position like this before, so limited by the ongoing circumstances but we, the adventurers into the unknown must prevail on this quest of understanding to express through our art the age long question of who we are and why we are here. Now I will leave you with this quote.