As a photography scholar, I was very reticent at first to photograph because I knew so many brilliant photographers. Then little by little my resistance melted and taking pictures became natural. At first it was only about holidays or my family life ; then it became a diary, a meditation of sorts that I did during solitary walks, close from home or faraway.
I can find the right feeling in the labyrinth-shaped petroglyph carved on an ancient, drenched stone in Arizona on a rainy morning; or the full sun and shadows of swishing palms on an adobe wall in California. The face of an unknown little girl in the waves of Orchard Beach could provoke it, or the face of my son amazed as a small parakeet perches on his finger. A staircase that leads nowhere in the Montmajour abbey near Arles; The graves of Chumash Indians in the yard of the San Simeon cloister in Santa Barbara ; twisting pine-tree trunks on a Californian coast ; the frozen surface of a pond during a winter walk; all of these can stir that same feeling of awe and incite me to take a picture.
But I always try to seize moments that have a spiritual resonance for me as well as physical appeal. If the moment is right, then somehow the photograph will be, too, and I don’t worry about composition.