We had plans of making things bigger. Life was super speed. We had images flying out, online platforms to scream out loud on and couldn’t be more grateful for the Internet. The world began turning it’s wheels faster with every second and it almost felt unstoppable. Caught in this whirlwind of discoveries, we entertained this culture of fast-paced hustling. To zap back and forth efficiently and bounce to the next. The world was churning and we found ourselves crashing. We wanted to keep up and it was exciting but our flames were burning low.
This pandemic has shaken the world. Hugs are no longer a thing anymore. We elbow-bumped until we had to completely shun ourselves away from the outside world. The framework so intrinsically built over the years plummeted and we found ourselves economically crumbling.
Do we dare slow down?
Do we dare observe what’s within? To face our demons and angels, to find sorrow springing out of the blue only to find ourselves caving into habits we loved doing when we had the time to do so?
We’ve got one thing that so many of us never believed would come in plenty — time.
We have the time to return to ourselves, to build what we truly wanted to see, and to unite through all that we have made. We have the time to recognize that all that we shoved down in order to keep up with the world. We recognize that we are the world.
We’re scared, and lonely. And we’re fighting so many battles that are unseen. We’re rubbing our hands raw with sanitizer, with mixed feelings of hope and restlessness.
But we are together.
So, do we dare let ourselves realise the privilege so many of us have within us?
Do we dare be present, and understand that some of us can connect with one another. Technology has made it possible to be curious and alive even when we’re torn apart. The Internet encourages our oddities, allowing us to find people who see life the way we do. Our connections are strong. And right now, it’s stronger than ever.
Like trees, we warn each other of devastation’s that occur in the world and unite to walk against it. We build new structures that enable freedom. We’re pursuing dreams that we put in the back burner, or we choose to do nothing at all. We can while our days away and still be valued just because we exist. We endorse the fact that we’re inherently valued — even if we’re just breathing.
We live in a time and space where so many of us have the liberty to do what we want to do. And be what we want to be. We have choices. We’ve had the freedom to fight for these choices.
All this, brought down by decades of evolution. Decades of growth and fight and commitment. To unravel to become. To notice our dedication to create, to love, to be.
Do we dare return to ourselves?
Do we dare slow down and appreciate our gifted generation?
Do we dare realise — what a time to be alive.
We created this series by asking a few people to take pictures of themselves doing what they love. We’ve received images of people painting, dancing, climbing, writing, praying and more activities that have helped them feel alive.It has been truly an honor to work with all of them — to have them display their vulnerable sides at a time like this is crucial. Grateful to everyone who participated in this series. What a time to be alive.
Individuals photographed with respective Instagram handles
1. Tina Krüger (@tinakrueger.art)
2. Damien Nicholls (@niemadde)
3. Pooja (Jo) (@karmicdev)
4. Mélanie Jacobin (@melaniejfree)
5. Gregory Roche (@gregorymichaelroche)
6. Lisa Gregory (@polemamma)
7. Prerna Dangi (@thepahadigirl)
8. Zahra Fathima (@zahraaa.fathima)
9. Kiran Mohanan (@kiran_mohann)
10. Christina Yang (@christ.ywn)
11. Rahil Sayed (@rahil_sayed01)
12. Milo Hartill (@milohartill)
13. Bijan Davani (@I_the_void_I)
14. Jacqueline Mazloum (@jackiemaz94)
15. Aravindh Ramesh (@arav._.ndh)
16. Gabriella Lee Sudyatmiko (@pebble.exe)
17. Nayantara Shetty (@nayantara.shetty)