“PHOTOGRAPHS ARE MEMORIES FROZEN IN TIME” by Norman Tjahanto
Dear Steve, I have been reading your website for quite a while now. And to be honest, I have gotten some inspiration of getting a Leica in my hands because of you, and a few other writers that have shared their experience. Now I would like to share mine, but not specifically about Leica, but more in general, about how photography is to me.
I have been taking pictures since 5-6 years ago, and I have never thought how it could change me into the way I am today. I bought my first dSLR because I felt “I needed one to record things and take pictures of things IN CASE I need it” but as time goes on, photography has become my passion, it’s a never-ending excitement for me. Now, I can’t leave home without taking my camera(s) with me. It even inspired me to blog! LOL.
Sharing a little about the gears I am using, currently the most usage are between two cameras, the Leica M8 with the collapsible summicron 5cm, and the Olympus OM-D EM-5 with its kit lens and the Panasonic 20/1.7. I have found that setup gives me the best results (for me), and gives me the lightweight carry. There are of course, larger, and better gears with better specification. But I don’t want to carry all that weight, and get tired and feel grumpy and cranky during all my travels (like what happened to me when I visited Japan with my wife, I carried a whole backpack of gears). So, I chose to slim down the sizes.
Enough of the gear chitchat, I’m sure you can describe them better than I can Steve, but I personally think the gear is just gear. What’s most important, is the result that I am getting from it. Each and every single snap I take I think is a memory of my own, my wife’s, my families’ and friends’. They are those who makes up my life, and thanks to these cameras today, I can always look back and think back of all the things that has happened to me. I can smile, I can laugh, I can giggle, and I can shed a tear. And especially, we love to travel, so I think it would be a waste if we can only relive those memories in our heads, having pictures would *almost* be like being there all over again, or makes us want to go there again hahahaha…
Many people discussed what gear is good, what gear is better (and still does), but I hope they are not missing the point of what these gears are supposed to do. To record moments in life that can never happen twice, never. These are precious of the precious. I always think that we can never BUY time, we can never TIME TRAVEL (well who knows in the future), and God help us but we can’t avoid death either. But from all that, I believe these pictures compiled together will tell a story to ourselves, families, friends, or even strangers. These are those bits and pieces that stays, forever. So yeah, I always keep at least one camera ready in my car at all times, and if I hop off my car, I take it with me. Because I will never know if there is anything that would mean something to me in my day-to-day life. Well why not, with cameras so small these days, I think it’s worth carrying it around anywhere.
I even had a vision, if one day my wife and I passes away, these pictures and my blog can be continued on by our children, and their children and so on. As to make up a family story and share with generations to come. I would be very happy if one day my grandchild will look up to a collection of my pictures and he/she will understand slightly what kind of life that their grandparents have lived, and what is shared. I think it’ll be awesome if I can realize that, and make that come true. But, well that’s a long way from now, but we all gotta start somewhere, right?
Now I intend to take photography as my full-time job (right now it’s part-time, I have a few paid jobs here and there), as I think I want to do something that makes me happy, and something that means alot to me and I think photography is my calling. Well yeah I think many of my photographs are still crappy and I will need to keep learning, but as I said, we all gotta start somewhere, don’t we?