Today, I got around to shooting for my final photo project for school. That is, I was able to make one exposure, after finding my nerve in the chaos of Santee Alley in Downtown LA, and before the unwieldy 4x5 camera (that Imo had to lug around for me) fell apart. These past few months, I've been diligently doing my work, waiting to discover a love for large format photography, but so far, it's brought me more frustration than joy. I realize that my issue with large format is that, unlike with 35mm or even medium format, I cannot be spontaneous, cannot be invisible; it won't let me forget my self-consciousness. But I can't give up now. I push myself to step even farther outside of my comfort zone. (Which is a little ironic, given that my self-assigned project is to take pictures of places that remind me of the Philippines, like this one, of Divisoria.)
Once in a while April will say, "Remember when we were in so-and-so, we did so-and-so?" There are too many things to take in during a long vacation and I've given up absorbing everything. It's true that each trip is a real education, which I appreciate. But at the same time, I have to stop myself from behaving like I am on a school trip with a quiz awaiting me at my return. So I like the feeling when April reminds me of certain details I've forgotten. Like the way people in Rome said, "Pronto" to answer the phone. Or the unusual (to us) names of streets or train stops. It's like a discovery all over again.