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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

A United Community





I noticed a defining attitude among the Amish. Determination, at peace with one's self, contentment and reduced stress. I spoke with the gentleman leading the team of horses in the last image. I am sure that pride is frowned upon but there was a gleam in his eye while he was telling me about his prize Percherons.

It was one of those days with a camera that I will not forget and I will be heading back up there again this summer and spend the whole day next time. When I am there I am going to ask about the issue of photographs...I have always heard that they shun images...until I find out for sure I will keep the faces slightly blurred out of respect.

I do have to say that I missed the image of a lifetime while visiting the Amish. It still burns in my minds eye. It is like the one that got away when you fish! The downpour had begun and I pulled over to the side of the gravel road because I saw a buggy approaching. I got a glimpse with each pass of the wiper blade but really couldn't understand what I was looking at until it passed by. Sadly, the best I can do is describe in words since my camera was in the back seat!

A proud high stepping horse was trotting home as fast as it could cutting through the driving rain storm pulling the black buggy and it's passengers...the driver (didn't see him/her) and a beautiful young girl about 8 or so years old. As it got closer I realized I was looking at the driver holding a large black umbrella opened and pointed straight ahead to block the stinging horizontal rain. That is why I couldn't see the driver. But just as they began to pass me...the young girl poked her head around the umbrella to see me as they passed. The smile with missing two front teeth, blond hair and a shy wave of her hand contrasted with the black horse, umbrella and buggy. I will not have another opportunity to catch that moment again. Driving home I told Karen about the day and the wonderful experience I had...yet my best picture remains only in my minds eye.

Dan

10 comments:

Sunny said...

What an outstanding collection of pictures. Some of your best work. The movement in the first one is awesome.
☼ Sunny

dianne said...

These moments you have captured are all beautiful dear Dan and they all convey a feeling of unity of family.
It is a shame that you didn't get the one photo you most wanted but you do have it in your minds eye and your description of it was lovely.
xoxoxo ♡

David said...

Dan,
The respect you give to the Amish people is commendable. Not many people give them that. I have heard of the Amish getting upset when people take their picture with out asking them. Many time, people are doing it to make fun of them. If you talk with them, share a few pictures with them and treat them with respect, like you have on your blog, they will be happy to let you photograph all you want. They are no different than the rest of us. We all respond to love, kindness, respect and a smile! Thanks for sharing the pictures.

Dan Felstead said...

Thanks Sunny...I appreciate the kind words. The horse in the first one is what caught my eye. It was so proudly stepping off the cadence.

Dan

Dan Felstead said...

Thanks Diane...I guess we all have missed that "one" special image that we wanted to capture...like the forbidden fruit...maybe I missed it so much just because I didn't have it!

Dan

Dan Felstead said...

David thank you for the nice comment. I appreciate your support on blurring the faces...it takes away from the picture but the "humans" are more important then the picture anyway!

Dan

DawnTreader said...

Great photos, Dan. There will always be moments we can't catch with the camera, but the shots that you did get say a lot. At the same time I sort of get a feeling that these are "impossible" photos, because these people are still sort of living in a time where the possibility to take photos like these did not exist.

About the blurring of the faces, you might even say it adds something to the pictures as much as it takes something away, because it reflects both their reluctance to be photographed and your respect for that.

Cynthia L. H. said...

I love the little guy in the next to last photo (even with the blurring of faces...which I think is very respectful of you, Dan...some people would not be that way.) I could picture your "perfect" picture through your description, kind of like an old-fashioned movie in my mind's eye. It is also a treasure for you to hold. ;^)
There is a small Amish community about an hour from where I live. I've been once about ten years ago. You've inspired me. I need to go again.
;^) ;^) ;^)

Dan Felstead said...

Dawn Treader...thanks for some great insights. You summed up my feelings better than I did!

Dan

Dan Felstead said...

Cynthia...yes it is time to re visit. And I hope you have as enjoyable day as I did. I felt so refreshed on the way home that night.

Dan