I immediately fell in love with this photo (a young stranger at the Quebec Rainbow Gathering) months ago, and I often look at it for inspiration. Artistically, I love the intensity of the girl's expression, the beautiful composition, and the shock of bright pink. Philosophically, I love this photograph as a symbol of hippie culture and an importance placed on experiencing life over following the rules.
I am naturally an extremely fastidious person and sometimes just down right anal and crazy about tidiness. However, this all changes when I am in the presence of children, because I believe they should get dirty, make messes and be engaging and experiencing life. That's not to say I don't wash their hands or teach them to put their toys away, but if they see a muddy puddle on the street and don't have boots on, I'm going to tell them to run for it and jump in. And I think this is a concept that we can benefit from as adults. When I don't spend enough time with children, I often find myself thinking more about consequences and clean-up rather than jumping in and enjoying the wondrous possibilities in front of me (not so much a problem these days since I spend most of time with little ones).
At any rate, I think I see my childhood self in this photo. I see an obvious physical likeness, but even more so I see the carefree yet intense spirit I had as a child......way before I became a neat freak. I was messy as all heck, hated to bath or wash my hands, would scream if you brushed my hair......I simply didn't want to waste any of my time not dancing, painting, playing, or running barefoot through mud. I've been trying to recapture that spirit lately.....perhaps that is why I was drawn to this photograph.