Tuesday, July 29, 2008

On jenn see, dboo, and why you do what you do: The Living Photograph

Longtime Gentle Viewers may (or you will) remember a young photoblogger from Staten Island who called herself jenn see. She had a couple of project blogs Tourist of Everything and I Am Following My Fish, that she created with friends Mysfit and OldBen. She was also part of the WebPix project.

She passed away two years ago this month and I found recently that her blogs are still there, all of them, every last photo she posted. Except for the last posts which explains why there won't be anymore, they look like any other photoblog. A living testament to Jenn and her friends created by her. There can be no more fitting memorial to her than those. Go look.

The need to express ourselves, to create, to leave a mark that says 'I was here' is a primative drive. From the paleolithic cave paintings at Lascaux to dageurrotypes to digital imaging people have been saying "THIS is my world and THIS is how I experienced it and THIS is my record." Though maybe in not so many words.

But these living photographs, these records, this ability to share them is incredible. If Jenn took boxes of photos, they'd be tidied up and distributed to family members who might frame some, or box up the rest, but there they'd sit, not speaking for her.

Which brings me to dboo. dboo is the flickr name for a guy named Steve (the archivist) who is scanning and posting THOUSANDS images from his father in law, Nick DeWolf. Steve is turning these thousands of images, once more into the living photograph. He tells it much better than I can but that's the gist.

I'm thinking about this because I've recently lost some images and can only recall one other time that had happend and both times pain me so much that...well that I'm thinking about them and posting at 2am.

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  1. This is a lovely post Jeff. I'm sorry that you lost some images. I know that one advantage of using a free service like Blogger is that if something happens your photos will be there for all time no matter what.

  2. Wow.

    A living legacy...

    Just wow.

  3. Aw. You are such a softie. With a pervy streak. Perfect!

    I remember jenn see and will be going to check out dboo posthaste.

  4. Very touching post and a reminder what photos can do to keep memories alive.