3.2 Unique Personality

My locus of control is firmly internal.

I can be engaged with several enthusiasms concurrently

I am an arms-length father now that both my children are properly grown up

The current crop of political miscreants fill me with despair.

I am trying not to be a grumpy old git with patchy success

I am not given to dwelling on the past.  Mostly I have forward drive.

I like boats but I’m very wary of the sea.


These are just a few aspects of my personality which contribute to the ‘whole me’.  There are myriad other factors which come into play under different circumstances.  Everyone is the same in this regard – we are each unique in our own particular way as a result of our inheritance and experiences.  Although each individual is different in particulars we each have many characteristics in common and in this way we may be considered to be more alike than we are different.  Despite gross dissimilarities in our circumstances,  I share many of the personality characteristics of a New Guinea Waruta tribesman.  As PJ O’Rourke has observed, if we were dogs we’d all be the same breed.


In considering the expression of personality through photographs we must decide the extent to which we allow the blurring of what we have and where we are with the boundaries of who we are.  The former are relatively straightforward to represent, even if we decide to rely on a little artistic obfuscation to avoid the risk of  literalism.  To portray the more subtle, nebulous traits of personality requires less reliance on pictures of things and more abstract representations. I am not my car, for example, nor my shoes. Luckily. As a vector for communication this approach has an inverse relationship with understanding.  As our personality pictures become ever more… well, personal, the less they are able to communicate unambiguously with the viewer, a problem which many photographers choose to mitigate by the addition of text.  The words do not need to be rigidly directive, just a gentle nudge to help align the viewer’s train of thought with that of the photographer.


Here then, against my natural inclinations, are some pictures with text. Click on the picture to start the show, then the text will appear.  They are intended to carry equal weight, to support each other in a balanced but poignant fashion, with neither overpowering the other.  I took each of the aspects listed above and condensed the idea into fewer words.  I took a number of photographs whilst I was thinking about them but not in order to satisfy the notion of each aspect.  Rather, I allowed the whole set to arise in my mind unbidden.  I wondered if bearing these things in mind might influence the pictures I took.  I am undecided about this; perhaps the passing of time will invest the work with greater import and relevance.