From The Beginning…

In this picture, I relate to Calvino’s Antonino in “The Adventure of a Photographer”. He states, “photographing photographs was the only course he had left” (235), to find what he was looking for: a certain satisfaction in photography that always seemed unattainable because of the obscurities of a photo’s reality. When I took this photo of a photo, I attempted to make the printed image appear as a digital image, obscuring the original photo’s objective reality. By doing so, I also made the experience of looking at my own self, as if I were holding the camera, more real. It was an attempt to do what Sontag described as predatory: I was seeing myself as I never saw myself. The look on my baby self’s face almost looked violated, perplexed, and maybe frightened.

At the same time, although this demonstrates the side of me that I could never see, I felt recognition. I felt like Antonino when he saw Bice “as if he’d never seen [her] before” (228). I’d always been told, “You always looked angry.” It was a concept so foreign to me, until I saw myself sitting on the floor playing contently, but even still looking slightly disgruntled.


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