The Letter

For several days now, my computer has been prompting me with a message, “Start Up Disc Almost Full.” So finally this morning I sat down and deleted old files from my desktop. I came  across this letter I wrote about a year ago. I’ve taken out the parts that refer to particular people or places:

May 25, 2007

Dear XX:

Just before the Christmas of 2005, I fell into a very serious depression. It was really unlike anything I had ever experienced before. Getting out of bed each morning was all I could accomplish. I was stuck in a rut, and convinced myself that all the ideas I have structured many of my most essential beliefs on simply couldn’t hold my own weight. Like a drug, I swore off photography, this at the core of many of my beliefs, and getting rid of it seemed like a remedy for the pain I felt. I even destroyed a large number of my photographs.

For months, I didn’t pick up my camera, though again like a drug, it was a compulsion I simply couldn’t rid. When I did photograph again, I decided to do a series of self-portraits. My original thought was to do a least one a day for weeks if not months, following a formula I set-up with the first pictures. Perhaps because of the depression, I was only able to make these pictures for a few days. The photographs here mark those days. The series is called 3 Days Spent Not Knowing Who I Am.

Clearly, this letter documents a serious crisis I experienced in relation to my life and photography (which in many ways are one and the same). 3 Days Spent Not Knowing Who I Am is a small edition box of photographs published by Kumquat Editions.

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