Friday, January 18, 2008

These Colors Don't Run...


But they can fade. I debated with myself about putting up this image. To me when I shot this old flag tied up in a tree in the forest near an old campsite used by the homeless, I thought about how it was out of place. Then I thought about the way it looked and made interesting shapes in the wind. I noticed how it was getting thread-bare and see through. When I started processing the images and thinking more about them, I began to debate if I should even post it. What would people think? Should I have taken it down and disposed of the flag properly and respectfully? Was I trying to make a political statement about the state of the nation? I don't really know right now. Maybe all those things, maybe not. Your thoughts?

6 comments:

d.c. confidential said...

Do you want to make a statement?

When I saw this picture, what I saw was an old flag that probably had stories it could tell. If it could, what would those stories be?

A Jesse said...

What a wonderful shot. I love the composition and movement, and I am guessing that everyone who sees it will attach their story to it. It is bold, sensuous, and abstract enough to draw me in and make me want to come back to it. I imagine many political statements will come to mind. Bravo!

Beau A.C. Harbin said...

Yes, I think there are lots of stories that could be told. I have actually photographed this before back in the spring of last year when the wildflowers were coming into bloom in the forest. It does not appear to have changed very much. I wonder when and how it got there. Thanks for stopping by.

wlantry said...

I don't know, Beau. We've killed too many people these last few years to be much worried about flag etiquette. Who could believe it stands for much beyond death and hubris?

panurgette said...

"Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"
--Emma Lazarus, 1883, engraved on a plaque at the Statue of Liberty

Why shouldn't there be an old faded flag at a campsite used by the homeless? They are no less American than us "homeful" folks. In fact, I'd bet a good number of them were Veterans.

Why do we feel like everything has to be bright and shiny and new, and throw it away when it gets a little faded. Not just material things, but ideas, people....

It's a great image and a great metaphor.

Jeffrey Friedl said...

My wedding ring, now almost 10 years old, is scratched up and getting worn. That's the way it is, and I wouldn't want to change it.

I'm with the first two posters: it looks like it has stories to tell. The way you framed it is perfect, transcending the cliché so often seen with flag shots.

First class all the way.