Surrender to being the person you hate.

Danny Klein- Blog

In order to bring you this next series of videos, we have surrendered to becoming something I hate – the people who take pictures of everything. I’ve always wondered why people take so many pictures or video on their trips abroad. No one wants to look at 20 pictures of one church or sunset, and another 10 of the food (one will suffice) or group photos. And If you’ve ever had a picture viewing party after you return, thinking your friends would enjoy sitting through 3 hours of photos from your recent vacation, you are wrong. Never do it again. Yet as we finish up our first trip on the road, I’m finding myself to be worse than even the most thorough tourist. And it’s not just views that we take pictures of, it’s … everything. I have especially fallen hard into the instagram cliche of taking pictures of my food. Not only that, but because we do video, it’s worse. Let me share the scenario. Walk into a restaurant, ask the the waiter if we can take pictures, walk back out of the restaurant and film walking in. Sit down, order. Try to take some sneaky shots of people eating their food. When our’s comes – try to capture the waiter delivering it. Then, reenact the setting down of the plate with a closeup. Take a picture or two of it with our fancy camera. Take a picture with our phones (tweet it). Then eat — oh God I want to kill myself!! Or rather, i just want to eat my food, or look at that sunset without the need to time lapse it.

Ok, I know, I’m complaining about getting to do cool stuff around the world. I’m doing this so that I can share my experience with folks who aren’t in Japan or China. And Im getting to tell cool stories of people doing great things. So I’ve taken a new attitude of surrender — Im tying to enjoy the process of capturing. It’s not necessarily about documenting the moment, it’s about creating art, trying to best capture an image or a feeling, it’s about working hard at your job. But instead of saying, wouldn’t this day have been better without needing to film it, the challenge of filming it well is as enjoyable as the experience… or at least that’s what I’m going for.


7 responses to “Surrender to being the person you hate.”

  1. camillaleila says:

    Hahahahahha. This is so wonderfully accurate. I feel the exact same way… yet I continue to “capture” everything because I love reliving the moments later. I love being able to share those moments with friends and family. And I think if looking back on those images/feelings/moments bring a smile to your face at some point later in your life, then it’s worth it. But still, sometimes I feel so panicked to make sure that I’ve adequately captured the experience.

    I guess it’s all about balance. And I’m still searching for it.

  2. vince says:

    I like watching people act out the experience I wish I could. The process of filming a trip in a choreographed way makes it real or at least the way I would like to experience it. On the other hand, watching a video camera swing around like The Blair Project distracts from any meaningful purpose to a film. Don’t worry about what scars the camera crazy generation is doing, or what others think at the time of filming. I trust your work to be enlightening and well made, traits uncommonly found to the mass of smartphone produced video streams flooding social media. Keep it up. A great video blog speaks for itself.

  3. tami says:

    you might hate that person, but i love this picture of the great wall! china is my favorite country and i’m looking forward to seeing what you eating there!

  4. Greg says:

    I get it. I’ve had those moments before, but they are intensified when you look up from your plate after having snapped the perfect shot and notice that everyone else in the restaurant is doing the same thing. I’m never sure which is worse: being the only one, or being one of many. What does it mean to be in a restaurant full of people photographing their food? You have an out, though: Whereas most of us are being That Guy just for our own selfish interests, you’re allowing a lot of other people to live vicariously through you. Sure, you get a lot out of looking at all the shots from your trips, but you have no idea how much pleasure you’re also allowing those of us who have yet to experience what you’re experiencing. It’s inspirational, educational and a fundamental act of sharing — which, in my mind, is what a great meal is all about anyway. I bet the restaurant staff gets a kick out of it, too.

  5. Foody2 and Oliver says:

    I totally understand what you’re saying, and I don’t know how you would get around that. Your and Mirra’s work captures the pulse of the people/food/surroundings and you two never get in the way. It doesn’t feel like anything is “posed” to make us think something. It feels fresh, alive, and leaves space to make our own opinion. Please Don’t Stop doing it the way you do!!

  6. kookoolarue says:

    We struggle with this too. But with my wife being both a professional food/travel writer AND a food blog to maintain there’s just no way around it. When we do go out and skip the pics we feel downright naughty!

  7. rohn says:

    yeah i know you hate it but i love it
    documenting one’s life creates an artificial reality
    on the other hand how can you have an artificial reality ??
    it’s like ‘being yourself’ who else can you be ??
    keep shooting and have fun

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *