Elements of Understanding 101 / by Nancy Musinguzi

Yesterday, me and my father bickered over where we wanted to go and shoot together. Of course I wanted to travel to a city and shoot on the streets. However, he wanted to be in nature, surrounded by Earth's precious elements, and be as far away from people as possible. At first I thought he was just being arrogant, arguing just for the sake of getting his way, but he saw it differently. After traveling to Uganda with him last spring, he noticed moments where I would be comfortable or uncomfortable taking pictures. I wasn't a fan of nature and he recognized my resistance to things that didn't respond to me. He was very right. I don't typically photograph environments that are void of human faces. They feel bleak, incomplete and underwhelming. I love interacting with my subjects, being inspired by their energy and compelled by the stories they tell with their eyes and bodily expressions. But my father did have a point. In summary, he stated:

"You don't need others to confirm your vision, literally and figuratively. People are full of opinions. And as a visionary, it's your role to develop your own interpretation of the world as you see fit. In nature, it's just you and the world, and whatever you want to make of it. Today, I challenge you to capture life outside of your own elements of understanding. Do that, and you will grow into the human you have always wanted to be."