Camera lies

          “The camera never lies”

          How many times have you heard this little sentence, looking at a holiday snap maybe, or a group gathering photo and not wanting to believe that you’ve put on those few extra pounds or gained the extra grey hairs or wrinkles.

          A comment from Meanderer on yesterday’s post “Behind the books” made me think, she said that I “always choose such pretty places to visit” and my thoughts ran along the lines that although my pictures don’t tell lies about the places I visit, they do omit some of the truth.  I need the happy thoughts and so my camera is drawn to the prettiness whenever I see it, I don’t need to remember the litter on the pavement, or the dead bird by the side of the road, the wood-pigeon nesting in the branches of the tree outside is a much happier thing to remember when my memory fails me and I fall back on my photos looking for the happy thoughts.

          For instance the picture above has omitted to show that we got lost in the outer city of Lille and found ourselves wandering through an estate of high-rise flats, it doesn’t show that Hubby ushered me on with my camera as a police car stopped next to the two hooded youths we had just passed, nor does it show the police van standing by ready to give assistance if needed.

          What it does show is the huge metal, windowless, structure glowing like tinfoil as the sun peeked out from behind a cloud and  twinkled on the corner of it to make me smile.

          This picture showing the two pairs of shoes almost silhouetted against the sky, their colours mirroring the two buildings with the grey and tan coloured windows and balconies doesn’t show the bars on the windows at ground level, and the metal rolling shutters which come down over the shop fronts at night, nor the over-flowing wheelie bin on the side of the road.

          Hubby is more warily world-wize than me, and so he tells me that the shoes which I found entertaining, and quite happily stopped to point the camera at, are possibly boundary markers in a gang culture, a warning from one gang to any other to stay off their territory.

          However, looking for the bright side, because there always has to be one, no matter how small, the very fact that these two pictures have survived the cutting room floor of my memories and made it here onto the blog is good.  I still need the prettiness, and the smiles to look back on, but with the aid of my camera I’m starting to look deeper to find the prettiness, and not to just dismiss the smile as not being there at all.

           More from before : A city-break in “Lille“, October 2012.

14 thoughts on “Camera lies

    • Thanks,
      Hubby’s memory is the exact opposite of mine, mine is teflon coated and nothing sticks while his remembers most things, good and bad, in detail. I sometimes wonder which is the blessing and which is the curse. 🙂
      I haven’t been to visit you and your animals in a while, I’ll stop over to say hello later.

  1. You have a way with words… and throwing in those memories that have meaning! I like the way you have told about what was going on in the background… and the fact that you made it out of there safely! 😉

  2. Glad that hubby moved you on and away from any danger from the hooded youths, And I do like the photo of the shoes. I wonder how they got there and if they are a message to a lover – home alone, come on over – 🙂

    • Oooh, I like the idea of the shoes being a message to a lover, its a much nicer thought than the gang territory marker, but if it is a message to a secret lover then unfortunately he must be a very busy lover because there were more shoes hanging over the telephone wires on the other side of town too. 😀

  3. Perhaps I should have rephrased my comment: “You always choose pretty places to photograph”! I understand what you are saying; I also filter out the gritty reality of what I see around me – removing the context. It’s what makes photography so interesting as an art form. We are seeing the world through the filter of someone else’s eyes.

    Love that building. It reminds me of a component part of a computer: a mother-board or something. Interesting about the shoes on the line too; I’ve seen footwear hanging on lines before and never thought it might mean something as menacing as gang boundaries.

    • Ha ha… motherboard or mothership ! 😀
      I knew what you meant by your comment but I’m glad you didn’t rephrase it because it helped to inspire this post. 🙂

  4. I’m the same way. I prefer the positive over the negative, the happy over the sad. I’ve often wondered what the hanging shoes meant, but I will still think of them as funny decorations. 🙂

  5. Pingback: Vous et ici | Photographic Memories

  6. Pingback: A shoe ! | Photographic Memories

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