Joy comes to mind when I see this photo. The joy of getting to take my husband and three-month-old son to South Africa and Swaziland where I was born and raised. We drove through Swaziland in the heat of December 1994 and stopped at the place where I first called home. We came unannounced, but were met by our old friend, Ruth Methlomokhulu. I’m so glad that Kerry captured this moment. The joy of reuniting with an old friend and catching up on life a little. For Ruth the important thing was not the past but the hope she had for her future that she is now living. Her life may have been hard, but she wore her soul out in faithfulness and love.
In the early 1990s, Kerry was invited by his friend, Kevin Hinman, to go to Bogota, Colombia to visually document a training program he was doing for pastors. While there, Kerry was invited to go with a some people who worked with Lindsey Christy’s organization that took food to the poorest of the poor in the city. It was a cloudy day and the smell of the soup permeated the van as they drove to their destination. When the van stopped, Kerry noticed that there was garbage everywhere and people were picking through the garbage. He was asked to not get out of the van or at least not to go far from the van as the place was so dirty that diseases were found in that area that were not yet documented anywhere else. Staying close to the van, he took a few photographs of people who came to get a bowl of soup. He was saddened by what he saw. The desperate poverty in that area juxtaposed by the wealth he had noticed in other areas of the city. It made him feel guilty that he was a part of those who had and this man had so little. It also made him feel grateful for the things he did have.
This photo touches me deeply. This man’s eyes are so expressive and show subtleties of various emotions. He seems intrigued and a little amused by this foreigner with a camera and that he should be the one getting its attention. He seems friendly, but at the same time I see in his eyes a wariness and a hardness.
What do you see when you look in his eyes? What emotions does it stir in you? Share them in the comment section below.
Kerry Lammi: the photographer
Shari: the blogger
I have the incredible privilege of being married to a photographer. This gives me the opportunity to see actual glimpses into this world as Kerry sees it. I know I am biased, but I really do think Kerry has a special gift for capturing images that are beautiful, and that give dignity and hope.
Kerry chose the name, Wornsoulimages, as a play on words. As many photographers do, Kerry has literally worn out the soles of his shoes as he has gone to five different continents to capture photos. And he has magnificently captured both in film and digitally people from around the world who have souls, some more worn than others, but all of whom are precious and who have stories worth telling.
It is my hope through this blog to share some of my favorite Kerry Lammi images with you along with a little of the story behind them or my thoughts regarding them.