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Occupants pairs Rollins' visceral full-color photographs taken in Bangladesh, Burma, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Northern Ireland, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, and elsewhere over the last few years—with writings that not only provide context and magnify the impact of the images but also lift them to the level of political commentary. Simply put, this book is a visual testimony of anger, suffering, and resilience that will help its readers realize what is so easy to miss when tragedy and terror become numbing, constant forces—the quieter, stronger forces of healing, solidarity, faith and even joy.
Hello, I wanted to take a moment, actually, since what I wanted to tell you about took so long to make, this might take more than a moment.
Many years ago, I started working on a collection of photographs for eventual publication. I do a lot of traveling and as much as I write when I am in these places, a photograph speaks a different language, so I started hauling camera gear around with me everywhere I went and documented moments as best as I could.
At some point, I upgraded my gear and took a lesson from a woman named Maura on basics and eventually started shooting in manual.
As I traveled and took more photographs I came to the conclusion that the book had to be more than merely a collection of images. If you are a real photographer, you could perhaps get away with that but not me. I am not a photographer, just someone with a lot of visas in his passport and a camera on his shoulder. The last thing I wanted was for someone to think I was being pretentious. I thought about what I could do to make the book be more time intensive on my part, so there would be more for the person who endeavored to get the book. I came to the conclusion that I would write something for each photo. In fact, I would write two things; an impression of the photograph and a caption that provided more of the practical information about where the image was captured, etc.
The writing was difficult and there was a lot of it to do. I committed myself to completing the project and eventually, it was finished. It ended up being one of the most time intensive projects I have ever put myself though. Not only was the writing tasking but I had to teach myself how to process photographs. The learning curve was pretty steep on that part of it but I think I did ok.
I decided to call the book Occupants. I figure that's what we are. We get some time on the planet and that's it.
I have never done a book like Occupants before, we are very excited about this one.
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