For the past few years, I’ve been driving to visit my parents every Sunday. There I met their life story. I listened, I asked. I put together a mosaic of their answers. Full story. I wanted to retell it in its entirety. And not just for myself.
I currently study photography at the Silesian University in Opava. I fell in love with photography at the age of fourteen and I still enjoy finding out new ways how to look at things around me. I prefer to photograph my immediate surroundings. I don’t travel throughout the world to take photographs. That’s why I once could say: “Mom, I want to take a picture of one of your blouses. We have such an assignment at school, I have to take a fashion photo.” And my mother happily agreed: “So how about this one. I wore it twenty-two years ago at a photograph you then took. I was sixty at that time.”
Recently my mother died. I’d like to gather all these Sunday fragments into a book. For myself, my sons and grandsons. And also as a school project for subject named “narrative photography”. I hope I can do it.
Photography helped me a lot to get over departing of my parents. At these moments my mom came to other thoughts. And she often took an active part in the process, as well. Today, I am still looking for further pieces of the puzzle of my mother’s life.
Nowadays I take pictures of my dad, who was left alone. Sometimes he asks about mom and then we are talking about her.
Eliott Erwitt said: “The whole point of photography is that you don’t have to explain the situation with words. ” I modified this idea a bit for myself. I take photos to tell a story. Sometimes I almost manage to illustrate a short one-paragraph narrative with a photo.
What do you think are the TWO most impactful features that make your image a good photograph? Don’t be shy!
One is color. I can’t see colors very accurately. My doctor also confirmed it. That’s why working with color is a big challenge for me. The second is poetry. I try to tell a poetic story with the image, but at the end I leave an open space for the viewer. Or at least I try to.
If you would be able to make this photo once again, what would be the ONE thing you would like to do better or different?
Perhaps I wouldn’t want to take this photo differently, I would rather try to take advantage of mom’s good mood and take more photos in which I would let her speak through her wardrobe.
Jindřich Beneš shared this photograph in the FRAMES Facebook Group.
Jindřich Beneš, Svitavy, Czech Republic
Equipment and settings
I shoot on Pentax, digital and analog.
Every year we release four quarterly printed editions of FRAMES Magazine. Each issue contains 112 pages printed on the highest quality 140g uncoated paper. You receive the magazine delivered straight to your doorstep. We feature both established and emerging photographers of different genres. We pay very close attention to new, visually striking, thought-provoking imagery, while respecting the long-lasting tradition of photography in its purest incarnation. Learn more >>>