A messenger arrives and pulls a padded envelope all torn up out of his bag. He is mumbling, "I'm an arms dealer. I have your stuff." He hands me this completely destroyed package with the gray stuffing getting all over everything. I make a mess getting to my precious books. But here they are. It feels wonderful and strange seeing all that effort between two covers. All those moments laid out. All of Noam's words weaving it together.
It was surreal seeing all the images I took - almost in a trance state this past summer - certainly not with the perspective that comes to them now. Everything I shot in Israel was taken too fast. No time to decant and breathe. Like a silver ball bouncing around a pinball machine. I never got to hang out. I never spent more than an hour in any location. Now seeing the book, it feels like an incredibly rich chapter in a much bigger story I have been working on my whole life.
Glenn did a two hour TV show on Wed. I should have been so full of myself with all those pictures hanging so beautifully in the TV studio, all the bumper images of mine showing between the breaks, the video package of us going talking through the large prints in Soho, all the kind words that were being said about my work. And yet, all I wanted to do was take more pictures as I snuck around the studio with my camera. I felt more than ever - in this moment of such great recognition - that it is not about me. It is about the fire being kindled. It is about the message of discovery every day. It is about imagining a better way, and being true to your vision.
Then I came home to this email from a stranger: Hello Mr. Lange,
I have become a huge fan of your work through watching Glenn Beck…quite honestly, one of the first things I noticed about Glenn’s work was the photographer. I thought he/she was awesome and actually sought out via google who you were. I am a photographer too (albeit, very novice in comparison to your work)….and you inspire me to think outside the box, to think of people in a different way. I love the fact your work exposes people for who they are…truly, who they are…even when you pose people..you can see their personality, their heart…their personal beauty…and I’m soooo happy for you … I know you were successful long before Glenn…but, your words in the blog today said more about how photography continues to inspire you!!
Glenn thinks I am brave to admit any of this to you. He thinks it is dangerous to own up to our work together on my side of the fence. I am proud of it all. My politics and my friendships.