Saturday, August 4, 2007

Stories and Pictures

I like both stories and pictures. In that way, I've never grown up.

I've just begun reading a book by Thomas King entitled The Truth About Stories: A Native Narrative. Of course, I also checked out all his novels that the public library has: Truth and Bright Water, Medicine River, and Green Grass and Running Water, and I'll write about those books in another of my blogs, All the Rest of My Life , but it is this, his non-fiction work, that I'm going to read first. He writes things I know, but were only wisps of thought, and tells me things I never thought of at all.

From the first chapter:

~The truth about stories is that that's all we are.

~ I am a listener to the language's stories, and when my words form I am retelling the same stories in different patterns.

~ Stories are wondrous things. And they are dangerous....for once a story is told, it cannot be called back. Once told, it is loose in the world. So you have to be careful with the stories you tell. And you have to watch out for the stories that you are told.

~ It was Sir Isaac Newton who said, "To every action there is always opposed an equal reaction". Had he been a writer, he might have simply said, "To every action there is a story".

And that's just in the first 29 pages.

Last month I took a SOLINET class on Preserving Oral Histories . The instructor talked mostly about storage formats and digitization. The rest of it, the understanding why oral stories are so important, was left to others, others like Thomas King, to discuss.

Next month I'm taking another SOLINET class, this one on
Preservation of Photographic Materials
, another way we share what we know and think and feel, and reveal who we are.

This blogger , a photographer, wrote about photographs and prints a few weeks ago:

I don’t think there’s ever going to be a time where the photograph as a physical object becomes a rarity - a print is a lot more convenient than any current display device. As display devices become more paper like, eventually we’ll have smart paper - a sheet of stuff that’s capable of displaying images that has the look and feel of a sheet of flexible paper. At that point in our science fiction future, the distinction between a ‘displayed image’ and a ‘print’ disappears, really. So in the somewhat distant future, I guess we end up back with prints, albeit a more active sort than we usually think of, and the cost per displayable image drops close to zero.

Prints now can be digitally altered just like stories, when told orally, change in the telling.

I need to think more about this.