The beauty of distorted memories | Yellow fields Part 3 of 3
I had so much fun putting these photos together. Which is quiet funny given this third ‘yellow field story’ was in a way born from frustration (to make sense of this shoot, read the first and second story).
When creative collaborations collide …
So how did this third yellow fields story come about? Let me give you some information on my working relationship with Darren. At the end of each photo shoot Darren gives me a hard drive with all the images taken on the day. I go through and select all the images I want to use for the love story – ie. all the images that are to be published on my blog. He then sends the images to me and I post them on my blog.
However this time when he sent through the yellow fields shoot, he sent an extra set of images in black and white. I think I got a text from him at about midnight saying … “I think we should publish the images in black and white … publishing them in yellow makes it too obvious”.
Needless to say he and I went into a very creative discussion about how the shoot should be published. I was already torn between telling a sad story or a happy one (I ended up doing both). And to add another layer of complexity, publish in black or white? We kept going back and forth (via text message at 1am and then again the following morning).
We discussed what was right for the client (Erin & Chi) … if they did a shoot in yellow fields, they would expect to see the colour yellow there somewhere. What was right for my readers? … (do I take a risk and publish in black and white and would it be perceived as a cop out? … many people publish in black and white when the lighting isn’t so great). What was right for the story? (was the happy or sad story enhanced by telling it in black and white images?).
It was a total creative clash. I didn’t feel right telling the stories in black and white and I didn’t feel it served the client to deprive them of the colour yellow. Darren however wanted to push the creative boundaries of what we do and how we do things (that’s what I love about him).
To be honest, it’s quite common for Darren and I to creatively clash. We don’t always start with the same vision. And in this case we didn’t end up with the same vision. Who was right? who was wrong? Who’s idea was better? Who would win the debate?
In the end … as you can see we decided to publish all 3 stories: a) sad b) happy b) black and white. But I assure you … publishing all 3 was not us trying to compromise. Not in the least. I’m not in the business of compromising. I’m in the business of telling love stories. And I would never compromise a love story for any of my clients.
So what was it that made it all ‘stick’ … How did we get above the creative clash?
After many hours of bantering back and forth … with neither of us satisfied. Darren said something that made everything click (thanks Darren you’re a legend) …
He said something like … “When you were on the shoot you said it reminded you of Norwegian Wood” (and although I haven’t mentioned it here, it’s true … the whole time I was at the yellow fields I kept referring to and mentioning Norwegian Wood) … Darren continued … “Norwegian Wood starts off with a memory. He’s on a plane he’s thinking back and remembering the past … the black and white images are memories”.
That’s when everything clicked. And when all 3 stories merged (sad, happy, b&w memories). We needed all 3 to complete this story. There was no more ‘trying’ to compromise. All 3 stories merged to create one very beautiful long story …
The third and final story … Lost but never forgotten Memories
Our memories are such a strange thing. It’s no longer real yet deep in our hearts … somewhere … somehow … we often feel so connected to our memories. They can either haunt us or light us up. But either way, they are faded. Moments are lost. Moments are missed. Moments are incomplete. Moments are distorted.
And we do not know what we don’t remember. Our memories are always distorted. We remember certain moments over others. We repeat some scenes in our head over and over again (because it means so much to us). Others we hope to forget but they still haunt us. Good memories merge with sad memories. Our stories get lost. Sometimes go numb. Sometimes we lose ourselves. But deep down there is a part of us that strives to find that youthful love we once had.
This photographic love story is about the distortion and beauty of memories. Not matter what kind of relationships you’ve had in your life. Good, bad or indifferent … there is beauty in ALL the moments. If you look back, you will find the sad moments are what made the good ones so happy. The good ones are what makes the sad ones so real. So deep. And SO painful. Yet it’s the sad ones that often tell us how deeply in love we are.
And this is precisely why for this black and white love story to make sense … we needed to publish the first two stories. And now that we’ve published this one … I think it adds romantic depth to the coloured yellow fields. It gives a sense of longing. A sense of love. A sense of beauty. I really hope you like it.
Photographer: Darren Wong
Creative Director: Thaoski
Stylist: Katy Chung of Madame Moi