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Rod Bruckdorfer Mar 1, 2004 8:36 AM

Memories, 1979
The photo was taken on Kodak Pan F film with a Canon FTb fitted with a 50 mm f:1.4 lens. The image was captured at the Westheimer Arts Festival in 1979. This festival was very grassroots at the time and held along the sidewalk of Westheimer in Houston, Texas.

My wife had noticed the lady walking with several young women. They had entered a pub and were seated by the window. As the young are, the girls were full of life and the lady appeared to be out of time, lost in her memories.

I sensed, if I spent anytime adjusting the exposure, composing the image and focusing, I would lose the moment. I preset the exposure and focus, stepped to the side of the window and shot the image. Almost immediately, the young women noticed the camera, quickly moved away from the window and the image was gone forever.



MoonGypsy Mar 1, 2004 10:45 AM

I like this photo. It looks like it it could have been a still taken from a 1940's movie, or live shot in Europe at about the same time.
Because of the contemplative mood of the woman my imagination started making up stories about your subject right away.

Rod Bruckdorfer Mar 1, 2004 12:11 PM

Thanks Moongypsy

Thanks for the nice comment. A print of the image hangs in our house and is a favorite of guests. One of the reasons I work in black and white is because the image is an abstraction of what we see and lends itself to individual interpretation.

As with you, when I view the image, the lady's eyes and expression are filled with stories of children, love, joy, sadness, life, death and youth. I always wonder where she had lived and what she was thinking at the moment I pressed the shutter.

Evelyn Hofer is a master at capturing the stories within the image she captures on film - Shepherd In Spain, Man in Pub, Three Gravediggers, Dublin. She sets the stage with the tonal range, then allows the setting and person within the image to tell his or her story. As it has been said before, "The eyes are the windows to the soul."


P.S. Anyone who chooses a username "Moon Gypsy" must be interesting and complex in my books.

kronuz Mar 7, 2004 12:53 AM

yup, the shot tries to tell us a lot of things. i get a picture of an old Jewish lady on a Nazi Held concentration camp.....ofcourse minus the bottles lining up in front of her......

costas Mar 7, 2004 4:03 AM

A moment in time, one face in a crowd you catch it or miss it for ever.

I like the strong composition, the row of bottles drawing you to the bent arm which takes you to that expressive face. There are many dreams being dwelled on behind those eyes.

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