Turkey on Film

When digital cameras were gaining in popularity I was one of those annoying people saying it would never catch on and we should all shoot film forever. I was wrong and we shouldn’t, but I’ve never really given up on film. I love the look and the old cameras and all that but my main argument has always been the durability of film vs digital media.
Hard drives fail, files transfers introduce corruptions, super popular websites eventually close their doors. I learned a lot about photography in my grandfather’s dark room. He had hundreds of feet of film and 1000s of prints stored there. All perfectly usable.
All this is to say, that on our recent trip to Turkey I brought my trusty 28 year old Canon EOS Rebel G film camera and a zip-lock bag of film.
Halfway through our trip I got the film I’d shot processed and scanned. Here are some of the results!

General Merc Fish Watching

Robin and I go to the Merc every week or so. I get a tiny coffee and we watch the fish. Robin’s either terrified or delighted by them. Today he was pretty laid back about the fish. I think it’s because he’s just turned one and is feeling much more mature than before.

Three Snake Leaves

Three Snake Leaves is a beautiful story of magic and death made famous by the Grimms. (They included it in the second edition of their famous book.) Most versions have extremely punishing endings for the princess. I changed the ending for my story because I hate those endings.

My version is linked here: Three Snake Leaves

Instead of a violent and deadly punishment I have the princess revive the soldier herself in the end. This mirrors his bringing her back to life earlier in the tale and completes the vow she required of him in the first place: That their love would last a lifetime.

Here’s a gorgeous graphic version of the story for the curious.

Now Magnet

They say having a baby changes your life. And it does.

They mention sleeping less, and the new kind of cosmic love. These things are true. But I noticed something else too. Something I wasn’t expecting. My baby pulls me into the moment. He’s a now magnet.

If I drift from the moment, he calls out and says, “remain.” But what I’m learning now is to shape the moment I’m in. It dawned on me a few days ago that when I have him in the afternoon we can go out together. This seems like a simple thing, but for a new Dad, it was a revelation.

So I get time alone with our boy then. When we first started this arrangement, I wasn’t quite used to being with him in that part of the day so we would go from the kitchen to the living room to his room to the basement (where there is a carpeted TV room) and then back again. I was hesitant to leave the house.

In time though I came to understand the cycle: Ilgaz leaves, and two hours later I take him to see her for 15 minutes or so so he can eat. Then home for a nap, after which he eats, then Ilgaz arrives home and he goes to bed.

What he always knew though, is that within that simple time structure there are infinite moments of now-awareness to be explored together. Infinite variety, it’s so beautiful. Maybe it’s because I’m a new parent I have gaga eyes for whatever he does. But I think it has something to do with being present. I notice a new way he’s moving, or a new look on his face. There was some joke I heard somewhere about a parent getting excited about a mundane thing his kid did, “did you see that? He pointed … and he meant it!” It’s a level of detail that takes a lot of awareness. And its beautiful.

So here’s to noticing and babies and moments. And now.

The Photo