Self Exploration (day 7) – Story Telling

My work right now, which is a reason for starting this self exploration project, is to learn how to better tell stories with meaning and humanity, not pop and filler. I am learning that I need to be clearer with this. In a world where we’re constantly bombarded with subliminal messages, the only way to understand my story on a deeper level, my meaning and message, is to be clear and commit to it.

This makes what I’m trying to do more documentary, less art. Art is left to the viewer to interpret. Documentation is a journey through reality, letting the reader or viewer connect the dots of humanity. I like humanity. Sure, fantasy is fantastic, but I don’t want to distract from the story of now, from this.

I think story tellers are more important then computers. I think a good story teller realizes the value of the computer as a tool.

This orchid is my mother’s orchid, given to her by my partner. My mother had it for over a year, and, aside from the initial bloom when it was received, it didn’t bloom again. Since she’s asked me to care for it, it’s bloomed twice. I believe it is a symbol reminding me of the people who care for me and the special light they carry within them. I believe our stories live on in the gifts we give.

I am starting to think that even in our digital world today, true story tellers are still the ones who manage to tell their stories without depending on digital tools singularly.

Given that my younger brother calls me InterNed, this is something I’ve been trying to comprehend.

My mediums for capturing and telling stories are photographs and poems or writing. I still feel like I don’t tell a strong story with either, but looking back at my beginnings, I realize I am better then I once was.

I learn by collecting examples and studying them. Hence my love for biographies and development books. I know that even though I have all the examples in front of me of story tellers I admire, there is no way to become good unless I practice.

My partner says: “You can practice all you want in front of the mirror or in your bedroom, but the moment you step onto the stage, everything changes. The only way to gain the valuable experience is to get onto that stage.”

One person I would like to recognize for being instrumental in causing me to re-think how I tell stories is Janne Robinson (@jannerobinson) ( She doesn’t know me yet. She leads by example. She makes her stories so human with a voice she’s clearly spent time developing. She consistently exposes herself. It is extremely motivating.

The other story teller is Sebastião Salgado. Upon watching the documentary about him: Salt of the Earth, I was instantly aware my attempts at telling a story have been half-hearted. You may not recognize the name, but you’ll be certain to recognize the photographs.

Why wait, I thought. Start now. Start with your feet.

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