By now, I suppose most people have heard the news of the ship filled with high school students that sank yesterday while on route to Jeju Island. As I type this some 290 people, most of which are just high school students are still missing.
Hearing about this yesterday and thinking about it last night really brought back a lot of different memories. My own father, drowned, albeit under different circumstances. Still, I remember the feeling after hearing about what happened to him and how hard it was to imagine his life ending like that. A lot of news agencies are really focusing on the messages the students were sending to loved ones once they knew they were in trouble. I’ve often wondered about my father’s last thoughts. I’ve often wished I could have gotten such a message.
The photo above is from Jeju Island, the Spring of 2010. After my dad passed I was told it was the background of his desktop at home. He had a sticky note on his computer that was to remind him to remind me to take him there some day.
As tenuous as these connections may seem, they did well enough to bring back a lot of emotions for me. I met someone whom has a cousin on the boat and I really wanted to say, “I know what you’re feeling.” The words are cheap, and said far too often without much thought. I remember people often saying them to me and my reaction more often than not telling them to fuck off. I didn’t think anyone understood.
I hope they find more people and the rescue effort has some success. The hardest part is waiting.
I remember that well.
As much as I hate to talk about cameras, I love this camera. My first ever Leica, and my favorite still. Been through a lot, me and it. Through all the ridiculous cameras I bought and wasted money on it was always this one I used when I “needed” a photo.
untitled on Flickr.
Saturday night in Seoul.
untitled on Flickr.
Sometimes, I miss shooting on the streets. I don’t do it much anymore. Mostly now, my camera follows me to bars or anywhere with drink, ha.
Seoul, South Korea.
Portrait of a Korean Girl on Flickr.
"…It goes deeper. Plastic surgery is as common as cold medication with ads being on every bus, in every station, and just about anywhere else you might imagine. Strategically placed, often in the fashion-able areas of the city or the areas with a lot of high school and university students the percentage of regular clinics to plastic surgery hospitals is lopsided in a way you might not believe. Once going to one, the girls are wined and dined with beautiful workers and before and after photos. The waiting rooms are more luxurious than the best of hotels. The sad part is, after the surgery is over the patients are shuffled off into army style cots in shared rooms that look like they belong in the dingiest of Seoul motels. The wining and dining is over.
People have asked me why I label a lot of my new photos with “여자들”. It simply means, girls or women, but the connotation is far from simple.
One girl once told me:
” Being a Korean girl is spending an entire life figuring out which mask to wear and when.”
“Do you ever just take off the mask altogether?”
“Would a diver take off their mask? They would drown, right? Die? I think I would also drown”….”
From my blog post,