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81.365 50mm f2.8 1/500 ISO 200If I know anything about nurturing deep and abiding friendships (and I like to think I do) it must be in part because I have watched my mom and my godmother do it beautifully for my whole life.  I am lucky to be a sort of junior partner in their small sisterhood.

I am lucky also that they are both unflinchingly supportive of whatever folly I might indulge in, including this blog.  Jewel, my godmother, is an artist and I was surprised to discover that I really got her thinking with my repeated handwringing in this space about the what does it do? test I feel compelled to apply to my pictures.  (I should admit here that I have never really had a specific list of criteria that would prove to me whether any given picture actually does anything.  It's been more of an I know it when I see it kind of thing.)

But.  Luckily there are people in my life who are more methodical than myself.  Jewel had not only been thinking through the question of what does it do? but answering it.  In actual list form.  And of course the minute she told me that I thought oh right!  I should have thought to do that.  She was  kind enough to share her list with me, with the caveat that it is by no means complete:

by Jewel Wheeler

How cool is that?

So here is a resolution as I start 2011 and continue on this 365 path: aim to have each picture do something.  It may not be possible to live up to this every day, but I'm going to point myself toward this True North.  Of course it would be easier to achieve if the list were longer.  Any ideas of other things I might add?

Oh, and Happy New Year everybody!

Reader Comments (6)

Great thought....

Building on Delight....Generate a Belly Laugh.
on emotion...Produce a tear on the cheek

January 1, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJohn O

Evoke a gasp
Make you pause
Linger in the mind's eye

January 1, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterlisa

It's extremely cool!

It appears you've been inside my head with this post. I want desperately to shoot each image with purpose but have been struggling to make the transformation. I just finished an email to an amazing photographer in India on this very topic. Weird.

I love this post Corinna and I'm pretty sure I love your godmother.


January 2, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterChristopher

Captures a moment?: check
Tells a story?: check
Epitomizes a deeply treasured value?: check
Makes godmother cry, excuse me, excites an emotion?: check
Proves Corinna's got a special eye and special heart?: check, check, check

P.S. Pretty sure I love you, too, Christopher

January 2, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJewel

another 'what does it do':
Joins us in love across time and space and acquaintance--sometimes gloriously.

January 2, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKathleen

Hi Corinna, this is surely food for thought. I love your godmother's thoughts and yours too. already, i have started posting a picture with a little writing on my blog daily or try to aim to do it daily and I am trying to be authentic with it all as well as courageous. and yes, it is great to ask myself what does it do? what do my photographs do? i know that they create a space that is just mine and they allow me to grow and think in the little time that I have to do both! I would also add that photography creates fun in my life and builds my confidence.
and it is interesting to ask ourselves what else does it do? thanks to you i will be sure to follow Christopher's blog from now on.
have a great day! x

April 26, 2011 | Unregistered Commentertamar

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