Cycle of Life
Updated: Nov 3
This image blog inspired by a great friend of mine, the Master Photographer Ko Sichi 柯錫杰, dated back more than 20 years ago during a trip to Chiangmai, Thailand, where we stayed overnight at a lovely Thai wooden house in a rose farm belonged to a friend of mine, Jo.
Ko was with his wife, Jessie Fan, a renowned dancer, and a cheerful character, and traveling with the couple has every minute filled with Ko's stories and his pursuit of photography with people I could only know by their names in books. Conversations with Ko on photography are all about concepts, philosophy, and passion.
The morning of a rose farm is beautiful; beads of dew on rose petals reflect the light from the rising sun, and in no time, we found ourselves with the camera and started taking pictures. It was when the exposed images stored inside the film canister, and your curiosity hung in suspense before the development.
I was an avid Contax RTS III user back then with an extensive range of close to twenty West Germany made Carl Zeiss AE and MM lenses for the system - I have the best camera and lenses, full of confidence until about a week later compared my transparencies with Ko's. It was a shocking experience yet a great revelation to find out that all my slides are one after another correctly exposed, sharp, and colorful roses while Ko's roses are withered, tainted, and incomplete. Mine was ordinary, if not boring, and Ko's unexpected, mesmerizing and extraordinary!
Ko passed away earlier this year, June 2020 but lived in my mind with those unforgettable moments and masterful images he created. The idea of developing this series of images, "Cycle of Life," did not come to mind until a rather casual visit to a local park a few days ago with a respected Thai friend, Chusak Voraphitak, the park with the water lily ponds, that reminded me the moments with Ko.
In memory of Ko Sichi 柯錫杰 ( 1929 - 2020 )
"Death is the start of a beginning, life is the start of the end, and the cycle continues forever."
~ Tim I. Gurung, Afterlife
"If there were no beginnings and if there were no endings, we would have the absence of inertia and the presence of stagnation."
~ Craig D. Lounsbrough
"For some a prologue, for some an epilogue."
~ Bulgakov Mikhail