Admiring Elderly Wisdom and Simplicity

As an amateur photographer in training, I have often expressed my passion for shooting portraits of elderly people.

WP Photo Challenge this week asks us to interpret ‘Admiration’. There are many people I admire and respect, starting from the ones I love, to those I may not even know but get inspiration from.

I have instead chosen to share a recent series of photos made (with consent) from a lovely man, with whom I had a wonderful conversation, whilst shooting the Cherry Blossom Festival which you can see here.

Like me, he was admiring the Cherry Blossom Festival, together with his wife and another couple. He paid attention on what I was doing, and I was equally paying attention on them. All it needed to spark a conversation was to smile at them and after that I even got permission to photograph him.

I enjoy listening to their life stories and perspectives on old and contemporary events of the world. It feels like reading a book; feeding my brain with wise thoughts from people, who have seen so much, and finally learnt what a simple and meaningful life means to each person. That’s what I admire on them, and aspire for whilst aging.







55 thoughts on “Admiring Elderly Wisdom and Simplicity

  1. My history has given me many opportunities to sit in silence and listen to the life stories of those identified as “elderly”… amazing

    • And he would stop smiling every time I stopped talking to click him, so I had to put the camera down and keep talking and wait for the right moment to steal his smile again, and click it. Thanks, Lois.

  2. A wonderful post and a wonderful man. I often think about Candide, the Voltaire one. It really is the little things that matter in the end. A simple life. Sadly enough we usually have to grow old before we realize this.

  3. This is so You, this humility and this respect that transpires from all those pictures. Beautiful portraits, so full of humanity. They say that the eyes of a great photographer should listen before he sees. Yours exactly! Thanks for this great post X

  4. And I admire YOU! How wonderful to be able and willing to speak to elderly strangers and learn from them. I think I would be too shy to approach them. Beautiful portraits and sentiments – thank you for sharing.

    • Lex, I’m overwhelmed and grateful for your words.
      I’m happy that you appreciated the subject I chose and also the photos. I love portraits and particularly of elderly people. It’s so beautiful. Talking to them and featuring them, gives voice to their existence. I’m passionate about it.
      Sorry for the late reply.

    • It’s a challenging issue, Terri, and you made a very good point on the core of the problem. It’s not easy for them to live in a world that values only the new and misses learning from its past. Mistakes are repeated, and wheels reinvented. The human cost is also huge, as many people are considered obsolete when they still have so much to contribute.

  5. just when I think I’ve got you trained as to what you can and can’t shoot….you go and shoot this guy. In black and white! Where’s my swatter? Someone’s going to get it next time I’m in town! The guy has a lovely face, doesn’t he? Do you shoot in B&W, or edit it to B&W later?

          • is it easier than Lightroom? Do you use Lightroom? I have it, I just don’t have a manual (or time to learn it). And it’s an older version, LR4, I think.

            • It’s very easy. Much easier than LR. It’s all black and white and you choose which presets you want to apply to you photo.

              After choosing a preset, you can use tools like Dynamic Brightness, Soft Contrast, Amplify Whites, Amplify Blacks, and the advanced Grain Engine.

              For example, you can use a preset with high key or low key, etc. it’s all done for you. And you can play with it and change as you want. If you like the results, you don’t have to even make further adjustments.

  6. This is so lovely. Old people often get forgotten or overlooked but you’re so right they have so much to give and a whole lifetime to tell. Wonderful photos of this elderly gent. The smile at the end tells me all I need to know. 🙂

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