Raw emotion, frozen in time.
You can have your extensive lighting, planning, controlled conditions and fancy specialised equipment when taking photographs. It are the alternatives composed from rawness, decisive moments, and perfect timing that are my absolute favourites.
They strike a chord in anyone that cast their eyes upon them, because they tell a story. Everyone single person, especially those passionate about adventure, can relate to hardship and raw, genuine emotions.
That’s what makes us as all human.
A while ago, I bought a point and shoot camera as I decided I wanted to capture real moments in life.
Recently, I embarked on a climbing trip in Utah that ended up testing all the experienced climbers we had in our party. Fritz Carpenter took the lead, he is a real trailblazer and we were all concerned about what route he would take us on. He fought up the off width for close to three gutsy and exhausting hours. Fritz is renowned for his grit and determination, characteristics that are necessary in a world-class climber.
I’d never seen anything like it. After barely following the pitch, I found him slouched in his harness, utterly depleted.
Done. Cactus. Kaput.
His partner was grabbing gear from him as he sat whipping the sand from his eyes. I knew I needed to be capturing this raw, unmolested and entirely real moment.
There were no studio lights, medium format cameras, or C-Stands. The moment featured nothing more than sand and gut wrenching effort, coined with genuine raw emotion.
Maybe I am biased, it may not even be a good photograph. An old mentor told me to “kill your darlings.” By this he meant, you’ll have certain photographs that mean more than anything because of the emotion and story attached to them.
They trick you into thinking they are good photographs.
I am proud that this is a darling of mine and wish you were there on this journey with me so it could be a darling of yours too.
I’ve come to learn, and attempt to embrace, my life is always about movement. Hopefully I capture some of it during the process. All I want to do is get out into the mountains. Push my boundaries. Documenting this feeling is my true passion. Although, I see myself as a mountain athlete ultra runner, ice climber, and rock climber, I’ve learned that’s what I do, not my end goal. My goal is to document others pushing themselves in the mountains, and in life.
- Seth Langbauer