While we were setting up this shot a Chinese family was near us, trying not to openly stare as they watched us pull this giant camera out of its case and set it up on a tripod. A moment later I snapped a polaroid of the scene, which greatly excited and drew the attention of the family. They rushed over smiling and speaking in Chinese, and then they started miming the shake of a polaroid picture. Just like that the language barrier was torn down and we all laughed and smiled as the family passed the polaroid around watching it develop, before handing it back to me and waving goodbye. It was one of those warm and fuzzy moments that catches you by surprise and reminds you that what we as creators do is a universal task, one capable of bringing people together and uniting them even if only for a moment.
This is one of those images that literally takes my breath away, a place I can’t believe I’ve been, a photograph I can’t believe I made. I love being an artist. I love the opportunities that have opened up for me just because I have refused to lead a normal life. There are no words to describe the freedom that comes alongside the struggles of being a creator. God made the mountains, we made the picture.