Miki at Resolve kindly pointed this out to Benjamin and I : A very honest piece by acclaimed snapper Ed Kashi, discussing how he tries to balance family life with work, the insecurities that brings and all the other doubts that creep in when he’s on assignment.
It is a very interesting topic. For me, I knew my globetrotting would have to pretty much stop as soon as my son came along, as I didn’t feel it was fair to be going off for a week, month, whatever, and leaving my wife to look after the baby alone. I remember even getting worried before that, when I fell in love with Jane, because I knew that would soon mean a curtailment of any dangerous, risky, exciting jobs. I wouldn’t want her to stress about me, and I wouldn’t want to be away from her. That was tricky…I was in love with photography, and in love with Jane. Something had to give. I was 110% behind my photography, but things shifted. I made a very conscious decision to back off the jaunts for the sake of Jane and Louie.
I used to genuinely believe that my life was about photography. That is patently nonsense. It may be a big part of me, but it is not me.
Things came into sharp relief with the birth of my son. Letting go of certain aspects of my story chasing was very, very hard, and I struggled with that. I realised that chasing around the globe was me trying to prove to others what a great snapper I was. In theory that was supposed to make me feel better about myself.
Who cares…I shouldn’t…I had to learn to mature and wisen up, and I’m still learning. Love and family are a lot more important than a magazine spread.
You can check Ed’s take on Resolve. He kicks it off with these words:
“I remember when my son was only two years old and I was leaving for a two-month trip to Pakistan. As I was saying goodbye, I started to cry. Eli looked at me in puzzlement, not understanding why his father was crying, not understanding anything about what was happening and that I was leaving. Twelve years later now, Eli is 14 and my daughter Isabel is 11, and I still find myself needing to connect, to explain, to seek compliance or understanding from them when I leave them for my latest assignment — and more often than not, it doesn’t register with them …”