I wandered through the Corvallis Saturday Market on the Kelby Worldwide Photowalk this weekend. It was hustling and bustling, the booths overflowing with fall’s harvest. The upside of all of the rain we get here in Oregon? Things GROW.
Surrounded by all of the abundance, I was drawn to this spare booth. Not even a booth, really, just a table.
A table with a tablecloth, and apples simply lined up and labeled.
Boxes of apples for purchase down below.
And behind the table, a man with a twinkle in his eye and a paring knife in his hand, ready to offer me a taste of apples. I asked if I could take pictures and after he jokingly posed for me, he told me, “You should be over on Steens Mountain.” Which led to a random conversation about mountains, and hunting, and, of course, back to apples. When he offered me a taste a second time, I couldn’t resist.
And as he cut me a slice, I captured this photograph, my favorite of the day. The apple man’s hands, offering me up a slice of his hard work.
I walked away, pondering what photography brought me to: Out wandering the market, on a photowalk with strangers, talking to strangers, photographing strangers. That’s a stretch for the shy, quiet person I think myself to be. But with the camera in my hand, I am brave and confident. I become the person I want to be.
That leads me to a song I’ve been wanting to share with you. It seems that every few years there is a new pop song about letting go and being yourself. Each time I hear the new one, I envision a new crop of young people being encouraged to be who they are. I hope they get it sooner than I did. But at least I found photography, and this blog, as a way to “say what you want to say, let the words come out.” It doesn’t matter how long it took, I finally got it.
Enjoy Sara Barielles, Brave.