Thursday, August 18, 2011

Learn to Inquire More Deeply into What You See

Timisoara Window

This ancient window, beautiful as it is, represents one of the great missed opportunities of my career. Photographing in Timisoara just three months after the fall of the Ceucescu regime, and before the horror of the Romanian orphanages became known to the world, I came upon a large building whose grounds were enclosed with barred walls. There were many children standing around or playing behind the bars, and some came over to watch me. 

"What's that?" I asked the young Romanian who was showing me around.
"An orphan asylum," he replied.
"Oh, okay," I said, and turned away to the attractive pattern of shadows playing on a window across the street.

Some months later, someone else broke the story of the Romanian orphanages. It could have been me.        Serendipity knocked; nobody was home. (Olympus OM, 100mm Zuiko, Fujichrome 100 film.)

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