Friday, 15 May 2009
To Charlie, Tom, Marcus and Robert- With affection
There is an element of parenthood in being a teacher. Sometimes you wish your children (if you could call them that, without insulting them) would listen to you. You worry that they are smoking, drinking and cavorting too much. You are concerned when the projects do not advance at the required pace. You see them grow slowly and then one day in spring they sprout a dark beard which needs trimming. But when they go to Amsterdam in God knows what company you really start wringing your hands in despair thinking of all that weed for sale at The Olympics Cafe. You think they are forsaking the Rembrandt Museum for a six-pack of beer. You feel they are wasting their time. Just like your parents must have felt about you when you were their age.
And so life goes on and on. But then one day college ends and you must see them go. You try to cheat time by taking a picture of you and them just so there is something left, a shred of light from the present which has already become the past.
Thursday, 14 May 2009
You meet your students for the first time one day in early September of any year and you never know what's gonna happen in time.
Two years later, close to summer, you see them for the last time and say goodbye, give them a hug and may feel sad and a bit lonely.
Somehow you have become a bit like them (we, mere reflecting creatures looking for acceptance) ; and they, hopefully, will learn the things you've learnt for them, so they could benefit from what you've done.
And thus it is impossible not to assimilate their soul, and face, sometimes.
Tuesday, 5 May 2009
I have chosen this image of my older daughter Sahara because she is about to graduate again, at the end of June, and because she chose to do her graduate studies in documentary photography at the ICP in New York City. Needless to say I am filled with immense pride at her achievements and pray that she will do well in her endeavors wherever it is that her profession will take her.
Rupert Hayes, one of the most popular artists in the town of Whitstable, came to see me in April 2008 and we shared a few good moments whilst the shoot was taking place.
I did not see him for the next couple of months and then we all heard, all of us who care about our artistic community, that he had suffered a stroke at the end of the summer.
He has had a long recovery in Margate and is now walking around and talking while still undergoing therapy in Oxford, where he was moved at the end of the year. We all hope to see him back soon painting and carving his wood pieces for which he is known in this lovely town we call home.