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Thread: The first photos ever taken of...

  1. #1

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    The first photos ever taken of...

    I realize that neither of the photos shown below is going to win a Pulitzer prize, but they just might be the two most important photos I have ever made.

    The B&W one, which is a candid shot captured yesterday, was very much a surprise and done with no planning. It is the first photo of my nephew Matthew eating by being fed through his mouth (while his younger sister looks on). At four years old, he spent five weeks this summer learning how to eat without being fed through a tube. He graduated the week before I captured this photo with honors, as the doctors told the parents to stop using the feeding tube for anything but hydrating him (he hasn't yet learned how to drink).

    The first photos ever taken of...



    The color photo, which is posed, is the first one made of Matthew and his mother. Matthew was 11 days old at the time. He was so fragile that it would be another month before his mother or father would be allowed to hold him. He was born prematurely by about two months, which helps explain why he needed to be taught how to eat. He spent about five months in the hospital before going home the first time. Don't be surprised if this isn't the last time that I share this photo over the years as a point of reference for future photos as Matthew happily progresses through life.

    A print of this photo was hanging in the hospital wing where he was born. Plans are being made to move it to the brand new wing that replaces the original facility.

    The first photos ever taken of...
    Last edited by Mike Buckley; 20th August 2012 at 09:35 PM.

  2. #2
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    There are times when the content, be it something visual or something written, is just far, far more important than the aesthetic or technical quality. The quality comes from what it is and/or is about.

    Images like these are way above mere comment. They have a value that has nothing to do with artistic/technical merit nor, thankfully, finance.

    Beautiful.

  3. #3

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    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    Donald,

    Considering your belief that images like these are way above mere comment, it's ironic that your comments are especially touching. Thank you.

  4. #4
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    Thanks for posting these. I often forget how lucky I am in being able to do things like eat, drink and even breath. These seem normal and obvious until I am reminded that there are others in the world who have to overcome great obstacles to be able to accomplish these seemingly simple and automatic actions...

    We sometimes also forget that a great use for photography is in documenting life and the successes and failures in life.

    Best of luck and prayers to brave young Mathew and his family and others who care about him.
    Last edited by rpcrowe; 21st August 2012 at 03:00 AM.

  5. #5
    tbob's Avatar
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    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    Mike: You say these are not Pulitzer prize winning. They are. You have captured two brilliantly evocative images. When the viewer reads the short story of Matthew, and puts these into context the emotive power is, as Donald said, beyond description.

    I am not a huge fan of people images, but these transcend genres. The love and devotion captured in these images is humbling to see in a world where so many are self absorbed.

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    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    It's wonderful on so many levels to see the response to these images and the stories they help tell. Thank you, all.

  7. #7
    terrib's Avatar
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    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    Mike, these are beautiful and touching images and I'm glad you shared them. Sometimes we have to step back from all we think is important and take a moment to appreciate what truly is.

  8. #8
    jiro's Avatar
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    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    Mike, these are the reasons why pictures are important, specially if they have a story to tell. Thank you very much for sharing.

  9. #9

    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    Mike what an awe inspiring story and then the pictures....my eyes watered up for Matthew and his family and then my heart jumped for joy for them all. We all need things like this story and pictures to pull us back to the reality of life, the reality where people should come first. Thanks for sharing such a great story through your pictures. I hope and pray to see many more in the future.

  10. #10

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    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    Thank you to Terri, Jiro and Carl, though many of you will probably regret that Carl asked me to share more images of Matthew as he continues to embark on his journey. You know how proud uncles can be.

  11. #11
    Loose Canon's Avatar
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    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    Mike, I have been thinking about Matthew from time to time since you first posted about him.

    Sometimes prayers really are answered.

    These are without a doubt two of the most beautiful photographs Iíve ever seen.

    My Heart Soars.

  12. #12

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    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    Quote Originally Posted by Loose Canon View Post
    These are without a doubt two of the most beautiful photographs I’ve ever seen.
    Thank you, Terry. Your compliments to the models are much appreciated and I'll be sure to pass them along to them.

  13. #13
    allenlennon's Avatar
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    Re: The first photos ever taken of...

    Mike i agree with Terry, these are beautiful photos. Its great, hart warming and relief to see his improvements. You and your family must be feeling the same and proud of the little tucker(Sorry, an aussie word ) Even i am proud of him.

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