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No, my parents' names are not Bob and Selina. They are Jim and Candy. But both couples have taught me an enormous amount about what commitment means, in both life and love. Both couples share an inseparable bond to each other that is unwavering, uncommon, and undeniably amazing.
Today is my parents' 41st wedding anniversary, and I (and my brother living overseas in Japan) congratulate them on such a feat. Forty. One. Years. That is more years than I have been alive in this world. I respect them for the commitment they have made to each other, the life they have built and lived together, and how they continue to evolve. I thank them for being such wonderful, loving, encouraging, and supportive parents. They have set the bar high in marriage, parenting, and life; a bar that I'm not sure I'll ever be able to live up to, but admire greatly and will try my hardest to reach.
I admire Bob and Selina similarly. They have been married 58 years. I had the pleasure of meeting this couple during the Roots Workshop (a documentary storytelling workshop that is coming to Maine this year! Just like my other alma mater, the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies, the Roots Workshop is another must for photo storytelling). My second year attending Roots, I was able to document these talented and influential artists in their day-to-day life now on Cape Cod in Massachusetts. I struck up a relationship with them that went beyond Roots, and I subsequently visited them after the workshop to interview them, collect audio, meet their family, and document more moments in photos. As with my parents, I feel lucky to witness this type of commitment. I witness so many couples at the start of their commitment as a wedding photographer, which is an amazing choice in itself. But to see couples who are 41 and 58 years into that commitment is quite phenomenal. And to hear what they have to say about each other is also just as moving.
So on my parents wedding anniversary, I thought it fitting for me to make an official post for the little multimedia film I produced on Bob and Selina that I didn't write about when I finished it earlier this year. It is quite lengthy, about 45 minutes with credits, but I hope you take the time to watch it all. Turn your speakers up for the audio and music. Selina's voice is quiet at times, as it was hard for her to project, and I tried to balance her audio in the edit, but it's still a little strained in parts. I think the audio might have more of an impact on me, but coupled with the still images, I suppose, delivers even more impact. However, I was the one documenting it all, so I realize I may have a skewed perspective. I always welcome comments and feedback on any of my work, so feel free to share your perspective with me.
A special thank you to Robert Henry and Selina Trieff -- for letting me into their lives and letting their guard down; for speaking the most honest, heartfelt words I have ever heard anyone say about another person as well as the most raw, truthful words I have heard anyone say about themselves; and for embracing me wholly, far beyond what my camera and audio recorder offer.
Thank you for teaching me the importance you place on art, life, and love. The weight of this trinity you carry daily, because you have to, you need to. It is your resolve and who each of you are.
You both inspire me to want to live a life as meaningful and fulfilled as you continue to do so -- as inseparable partners to both each other and your art.
Additional thanks go to the wonderful family and friends of Bob and Selina who helped me to tell this story -- Robert Rindler and his partner James; Chris Duff and his partner Mark; Judy Yorio and the staff at Willy's World Gym; Berta Walker and the Berta Walker Gallery; Dick Miller; Carmen Cicero; Marshall Wood; Donna Byrne; Provincetown Art Association Museum; Sarah Henry and family Michael, Molly, and Emma; Jane Henry and family Tobin Harshaw, Truitt, and Etta; Patrons of Friday Night Summer Art Walks in Wellfleet, MA; Boston University's College of Communication; and the Roots Workshop.