<<< o >>>Photo Friday: Foreign 6 comments + add yours

I have to confess that this week’s Photo Friday theme – Foreign – has caused me some problems.

Foreign is a simple enough word, but when I came to think about how I might interpret it photographically, I got stuck. Foreign to who? To me? I live in a predominantly Asian area of our town so I could have gone down to our local shops and taken pictures of Okra, or Asian dress materials in the local shop, or any number of other cultural items ‘foreign’ to me. But, for some reason, that didn’t appeal. Part of the problem is to do with multiculturalism, i.e. these are people who live here – they aren’t, in some important way, foreign to me. Yet this isn’t to do with political correctness, rather it’s more to do with me not being able to get my head straight about what the term means in this context.

Anyway, I decided to take a different tack altogether. The picture I’ve used was taken when our youngest daughter was 26 days old. And while it may seem slightly odd to consider a baby ‘foreign’ I do think there’s something quite extraordinary about their emergence (for want of a better term). Now she’s ten months old she seems perfectly a part of the world, but in those first few weeks (as with our other daughters) she did seem quite other-worldly ... almost foreign.

4x3 + photo friday [noteworthy] + children [portraits]
comment by Joel at 04:07 AM (GMT) on 30 November, 2003

They remain alien creatures for much of their adolescent life, actually I don't think they metamorph until about age 22...

comment by tr3 at 06:25 AM (GMT) on 30 November, 2003

That is a truly beautiful image. nice!

comment by william at 09:38 AM (GMT) on 30 November, 2003

i think this challenge or theme is all the stronger for being a bit complex. i mean i'm an american living in an asian country, so it was kind of difficult to define what is foreign.

is it something foreign for a foreigner living in such a situation or what a local would consider foreign? and if things are from a different country but have been used or existed in your country for a long period of time are they still considered foreign?

i don't think there is a simple answer so we get all kinds of different photographs everything from a baby's foot (i really like this idea btw) to dishes, to pictures of foreigners.

comment by djn1 at 11:31 AM (GMT) on 30 November, 2003

Joel: I suspect you're right. We have five other children between us, three of whom live with us, and they're all somewhat 'foreign' ;-)

tr3: thanks.

william: Yes. 'Foreign' is a somewhat more conceptual term than recent themes, e.g. 'Work' and 'Gatherings', which led to much more literal interpretations. 'Foreign', on the other hand, has needed a bit more thought and interpretive effort - hence the variety of images people have used. And I agree, 'complex' is definitely better.

comment by imagesafari at 08:03 PM (GMT) on 2 December, 2003

nice! we've got a 2 week old.. their feet are sooo small.

comment by djn1 at 12:31 AM (GMT) on 3 December, 2003

imagesafari: congratulations, and I hope you get more sleep than we've had for the last ten months ;-)