an afternoon with uncle tom...

Just another lonesome day...  that was the theme that I was "shooting for" when I met up with Uncle Tom a few weeks ago.

This was my first attempt at a photo narrative for an online photo contest.  In this particular photo contest I had to develop the narrative using only two pictures.  For days I racked my brain trying to come up with a story, but nothing was standing out.  While watching a movie on Netflix, one scene in the movie gave me my idea.  Now all I needed was an older man in a suit for the model.  It took a while, but then one night it dawned on me that my Uncle Tom would be the perfect subject.

Getting older is a great thing as you have more time to spend with family and friends.  However, the downside would be when you outlive the ones that you spend your time with.  The activities that you do with those around you become something that you have to do alone.  I could imagine him sitting alone in an older restaurant just passing time.  Tom and I had a late lunch at Johnson Street Smokehouse in Greenville.  About the time that we finished, the place started clearing out and the opportunity for the picture was there.  We moved the tables around a little bit and I pulled out the M8 and started shooting.  Notice in the picture below the chair opposite Tom is pulled away from the table.  This signifies the longing for someone to be there.  As much as I love to be alone, I love it when I want it.  If I don't want to be alone, I have plenty of people to call to meet up with.  What a terrible feeling to have nobody.  That was what I wanted to portray.  Any of us could be there during the latter part of our lives.  (Moral here:  "be nice to everyone, you may need them some day")...

So in the movie, when the old man wanted to visit his friends, where did he go? He went where his friends were; the cemetery...  After we finished at Johnson Street Smokehouse, we drove to Sulphur Springs to visit the cemetery where Tom's father was buried.  What an interesting day to get to listen to Tom's stories of his younger years spent with his dad.  We got some good pictures at the Sulphur Springs cemetery, but it wasn't exactly what I had envisioned for the contest.  Soooooo, we drove back to Greenville and stopped by East Mount Cemetery which was less than a mile from where we started at lunch.  Of course, Uncle Tom didn't have friends or family at this cemetery but what a scenic view (as far as cemeteries go)...

Found out this week that I didn't win the contest (not that it matters, but there were over 1300 entries), but I would do it all again just for the experience.  This sort of activity is what keeps a photographer's mind going.  What an inspiration to come up with an idea, plan it and put together the pictures to convey the story.  I wish that I had time to do this every month of the year...


  1. Stacey walker: I Really like this!!

  2. Hello
    I love your work and you are very creative. Your photo's are delightful.

  3. Thanks Stacey and Cindy! I really appreciate the feedback. It was a fun day and exciting opportunity to get to take pictures and share them.

  4. I loved my father, he was my hero and he was a good man and a great dad. He is gone now and I am confident that he is with the Almighty. He was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2011 and was expected to succumb to the disease in 90 days. He lived with this terrible disease for another 2 years.

    His loving grandchildren will never get to know the man that I idolized for so many years.

    My father smoked for 55 years and although we begged him to stop, he would not.