On Saturday morning, I walked out into the KaShoba sun, my mom’s Canon Rebel slung over my shoulder. I tested the light, fiddled with some settings, and tried to catch the precise moment Helen realized her hair was being more battered than braided. But as soon as the kids of the community saw the camera, it was all over. They asked to “borrow me it”. They demanded turns from each other, and they ran back to me to mediate disputes. At least once, I turned into my mother. “If you grab, I’m going to take it away,” I caught myself saying. But every time they asked, I flipped the camera to Creative Auto mode and let them run wild.
All eyes were on them.
No one was safe. (that’s the chief!)
Because who can resist posing for a kid with a camera?
They loved the zoom lens.
And sure, not all of them were great. (I deleted about 400).
But each of them tells a story.
And even without any Visual Literacy lessons, they got better.
And some of them were downright stunning.
Thankfully, the camera didn’t break over two days of constant stress (although it did require a thorough disinfecting for kid germs). And though I may not have taken as many photos as I would have liked myself, I’m so glad I gave the kids my camera for the weekend. I got to see their world as they see it: from knee-height, with intense joy and a keen intuition that everything is interesting.
My camera was everywhere, even though I wasn’t. I got to experience the weekend without worrying about taking photos, and yet still have some photos to remember it by. Thank God for Creative Auto.
Images are encoded down to cope with slow Internet speeds. (Trust me they look better in full-res).
Photo credits to Edgar, Christine, Divant, Diyanza, and all my other pint-sized photographers out there. Thank you for an awesome weekend. All rights reserved.