Cemeteries. I love them.
For me, it is none of those. I love cemeteries because I love culture. I believe nothing else defines a society or culture better than how they honor the lives of their loved ones in death. You can tell a lot about how people channel their emotions with how they, as a community, design their cemeteries. I find it very unique and very telling.
I find it poetic. Because here you have a space where the summary of someone's myth or legend is presented in stone, and together, a collective history of a generation or two. The stories told or untold are so fascinating. Who were they? How were they as people?
And finally, I find it artistic. Nature will ALWAYS win. The natural abandon and how beautifully deliberate nature is. There is a sense of amazement, bewilderment, unease, freakishness, and comfort. I remember I went exploring in this extremely old cemetery and found a clearing. The first time I stepped into a thick carpet of moss, you will never forget the aroma of rain on moss..... or the sense of being watched & judged by an unknown force... because you know you don't belong there.
Tip: famous cemeteries always have amazing stories to tell. Whether you're into the paranormal or just into great storytelling, join the local tours that they offer. You learn so much about histories, way of life, gossips, old wives tales, social norms and things you just don't get from books. You walk away knowing more about a city and its people if you understand their folklores.
But most importantly, remember where you are and respect the place. When I go by myself, I usually buy a bouquet of flowers and lay it on someone's resting place. Usually a child gone too soon.
As I said, ahahahha, they always answer with a "Whuuuttt" or "Why" or "Eww". It makes for an uncomfortable subject. Death always strikes fear and unease. But I do show my shots. And I love it when people start to understand why. I have friends from different cities now, and when I visit, they KNOW they have to take me to the cemetery or the public library. I'm a special kind of tourist ahahahah.
Just shoot what calls out to you. Never do it to impress anyone. Shoot because you love taking photos. Shoot because it is personally fulfilling. You are stuck because you wait for inspiration. Don't.
OBSESSION is a new blog series of Film Folk that features what fills up canisters and canisters of film from various film shooters and enthusiasts.
What to be featured? Shoot us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject "I AM OBSESSED WITH ___________"