What Was Important
And the more pictures Novalee took and the more she developed, the more she wanted to learn about what she was doing. She studied photography magazines – Camera & Darkroom and the Photo Review. She made calls to photo labs in Sacramento, California, and wrote letters to Kodak in Rochester, New York. She asked Moses a thousand questions and remembered everything he said.
Forney brought her stacks of books and she read about Grodon Parks and William Henry Jackson. She studied the work of Dorothea Lange and Alfred Stieglitz, Ansel Adams and Margaret Bourke-White.
Once, on a rare weekend off, she drove the Toyota to Tulsa and went to a photo exhibit, her first. She wandered the rooms and halls of the gallery and wrote pages of notes, then talked herself all the way home about what she had learned.
Then, after all the hours she spent learning…after hundreds of pictures, days and nights in a darkroom, questions about shutter speeds and sepia tones and light vibrations…after all that, Novalee discovered what was important to her about pictures of cats and children and merry-go-round horses…about girls in white dresses and old women tasting tea…about birthday dinners and anniversary kisses. What was important to her was knowing that at the moment she took a picture, she was seeing something in a way nobody else ever had.
Extract from the book Where the Heart is
By Billie Letts
All Rights Reserved.
New York: Warner, 2004, c1996
Call Number: English LET
Extract submitted by Camellia Tay
Available at NLB
Title: The Catcher in the Rye
By J.D. Salinger
Call Number: English SAL
Title: The Fountain Head
By Ayn Rand
Call Number: EnglishRAN
Author: Geraldine McCaughrean
Call Number: J English MAC
Do you think it is important to understand the reason why you enjoy doing something very much? Why?
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