Through a Jungian Lens

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The Unknown Photographer

with 4 comments

I was a good tourist yesterday as I spent most of the day in Shanghai taking photos while at Expo 2010.  How can one be in a country and not take in one of their significant cultural events?  I don’t like crowds, but the Expo experience in Shanghai required that I deal with this and accept it without complaint if I wanted to find personal value in the experience.

By the end of the day I had accumulated almost three hundred photos and very tired feet.  I found myself taking photos of people almost as much as the pavilions and the artifacts such as this photographer.  This photo is almost a self-portrait.  Aside from the colour and length of hair, this could easily be me with my camera.

It is interesting to me how I am finding my “self” in others, as though I am “conscious” of my projections and as a result seeing that the “individual” Robert is actually not really a separation from “others.” I am aware of the biological, cultural and social separations which is a good thing to be aware of. I am also aware that each “other” I encounter has a unique story that could be told. Yet, in spite of these stories, I am seeing the invisible connections that lead back to a one-ness, a wholeness. I am my brother and my brother is me.


Written by Robert G. Longpré

October 16, 2010 at 12:53 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

4 Responses

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  1. I just wanted to say: nicely put.


    October 16, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    • Thank you, Cedric. 🙂

      Robert G. Longpré

      October 17, 2010 at 9:51 am

  2. Taking photos of people is always interesting. There is something about another person that pulls our eye. We search for connections between us, and want to capture those connections. I love taking photos of people, and when I look at the photos later I can see why I tried to ‘immortalise’ that particular image/person. It is usually because, one way or another, the person is demonstrating a part of me that I think is good, or something that I want for myself. Endurance, experience and wisdom in the faces of the elderly. Liveliness, adventure, rebellion in the faces of the young. Peace and serenity in monks… the list is endless. When I photograph photographers, I am looking for their talent (and their equipment!).

    Is this another form of cannibalism? In some tribes when a person died it was necessary to eat part of the brain or body to gain what was contained within the body. With photographs and people watching, do we try to gain the essence of ‘the other’?

    Lotus Light

    October 17, 2010 at 8:10 am

    • What we see in others is what resonates with both our conscious self and our unconscious shadow. This is a good measure of the “positive” stuff of the shadow as well as the “negative.” Faces are like our mirrors.

      Robert G. Longpré

      October 17, 2010 at 5:57 pm

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