Inspired by 3191 …

… these are vignettes of simple everyday things: a cup of coffee, soft-boiled eggs, rain boots kicked off at the front door, the stem of a flower, many crumpled napkins, many spoons. Though the two women were 3,191 miles apart the images are complementary in their color and composition more often than not. Sometimes startlingly so. The blog, and the book that followed after a year’s worth of images (and 3,000 visitors a day from Australia to Iceland), capture the rhythms of everyday life, often surprising the viewer by the sheer beauty of the most quotidian element. That each woman paused to record the curve of a daughter’s ear, a bowl of cereal or a shadow cast across the floor before sitting down in front of a computer is an act that carries with it the most clichéd, yet essential, of all messages: stop and smell the roses (and the coffee, the toast, the morning air). We’re living in difficult times, and it seems it’s exactly these tiny details and fleeting moments that can offer us the most solace and even joy. —Allison Arieff, The New York Times

The morning hours before the hustle and bustle of the day commences is the perfect time to pause and enjoy a sense of renewal and vitality. On the morning of December 7, 2006, Maria Alexandra Vettese and Stephanie Congdon Barnes each took a digital photo of everyday objects randomly arranged on their kitchen tables and, unbeknownst to one another, uploaded them to the website Flickr.

“A Year of Mornings” collects 236 images—always taken before noon without discussion between the two women – from this uniquely 21st-century artistic collaboration. The intimacy of these photographs—discarded clothing, a view of a snowy day from the window, a table cloth—combined with their striking similarities in color and composition defies the reality of their long-distance collaboration. While clearly kindred spirits, the two women have met in person only once. Their friendship is maintained solely online, sustained by a shared love for moments of serenity, solitude, and peacefulness. The annotated photographs in “A Year of Mornings” radiate an aura of sweetness and light—the promise of a new day.


 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
Mohit G and Penelope G decided to have our own version:
OK, not very innovative.
And worse still we weren’t doing it 365 days a year.
We had attempted with a realistic once a week upload.
We went as far as a schedule for 3 months, outlining the one-to-four word title per week.
The shorter the better … as everything was meant to be opened for interpretation.
The idea was to see how two different gender, two people from two different sides of the world would perceive the world.
Our very own anthropology and sociology study if you will.
Needless to say with demanding work load; me, then a banker and he, a programmer {only he doesn’t do any real programming but manages a team who does it} … we were often half praying the other would be so hard pressed with time and fails the pact. 
Eventually the embarrassment was abandoned and very quickly we would openly admit and tease the other party for failure to upload.
Soon, the project was totally abandoned when personal crisis hit me first, followed by him.
something we would not discuss with others … just between us and the family.
I would no longer term this something as “battling with” but rather “living with”.
Our telephone conversation yesterday was profound{ly funny} – not in a ha-ha manner but a peculiar, ironic manner.
Are we miserable?
No. We are far from capable of feeling miserable or being able to detect ‘miserable’.
What’s left is the ability to know when we’re actually feeling ‘good’.
We, according to Mohit, have slipped down the Maslow Hierarchy … and until and unless we regain a seemingly good altitude, it’s unlikely that we’re capable of many things amongst which our interest in photography.
Maybe he’s right.
In any case, while I try to keep the Penelope Gan | Photoblog going … tough as it really needs some serious inspiration, drive, and mojo to not only post a photo but blog about it, I had always wanted to showcase some of my film experimentation and digital photos still in archive.
Lack of drive to actually start with some html or CSS, I gave up my >2 years old attempt to finish off a personal website with photo gallery capabilities built on WordPress platform for a simple blogger 1 column wide width layout.
And with that … here’s a new attempt called My Range Finder; given that all I have is one film range finder and the {on permanent loan? gift?} Leica M8.2 (digital).
With the new job – miserable and demanding – we’ll see how successful I am.

ambitious? Hardly.
Probably just looking for some distraction and reviving a hobby.
And with all of the above said, I must go to snoozle land NOW!!! … else I’ll be cracking my brains in my sleep deprieved state as to why I refuse to show up for work … and I’ve barely survived 7 working days to date!


8 thoughts on “Inspired by 3191 …

  1. yeah – I think the ladies are.Too expensive and troublesome in my opinion. Still have 6 unopened boxes back home in the fridge.I don't need it really, I have 'mastered' the art of unpredictability with the M8.2!:p

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