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15. SIT video/photos & memories: (full)

Why video rather than photo for SIT?

    Anecdote:    My Dad's photo memories: Months before my father died he told me that he wished he had more slides of his yearly travels out West. Yet this summer as I rummaged through his effects. There were hundreds, if not thousands of slides.                  

So what did he mean?    
    Perhaps that in life's final twilight you can't relive life enough.
    Did he also mean that you had to have something to relive?

Perhaps our review of life is somewhat analogous to the instantaneous life flashbacks of near-death experiences. In the final years we may hold ourselves sorely accountable for the valuable time we had …. and wasted. (By analogy, I have hundreds of hours & gigabytes of video footage of all my travel trips: US & foreign which I edit to ‘re-live’ the trips / my life)

More than 30 years ago, I began videoing all my (SIT) independent solo travel, including hikes in US & Canada's National Parks & driving trips. Every travel day I took extensive videos including my ad-lib narrative & questions.

Their sole original purpose then & now was to let me relive my solo independent domestic travels and my authentic ‘in-the-dirt’ level foreign travels in my old age rocking chair when I could no longer hike or travel. i.e. “now” (cancer.) 

I was never content with sterile snapshots revealing little description, context or detail unless it was the obvious: Eiffel Tower. I DO love a truly creative photo, but travel photos are NOT usually that quality; merely travel bookmarks.

ARS Currendi: 6 Reasons Why Travel Videos Are Better Than Pictures.

When I visit a site or experience, I consciously search out its nuances & details. I video-record my reflections, and emotional reactions, if any. AND  the myriad of questions constantly popping into my brain.

Without my videocamera's running-narrative memorializing my reflections & questions,
such nuances would be lost to me forever; fine sand slipping quickly thru my mind.


Ironically, during much of my foreign travel years, I could seldom immediately review & edit my videos when I returned home because I was too busy researching & planning my next trip. So now, in my 80s, I tirelessly edit videos for my YouTube Channel < [ytlk: ???  Scott’s Travels] AND write this website.

Even now when editing, I'm surprised by sites & experiences I had completely forgotten about, and would never have remembered without the video. 

Now, at 84, I have the luxury and obsession to find out more about a site, statue etc. & their importance to their culture. Even as I edit, I stop & Google these questions I pondered years ago slipping a short comment in my video.

I never planned to make my videos public, until todays technology allows it. 

1) Why Video (rather than photos)?: 

    a) video mimics the natural panoramic sweeping view of my own eyes across the landscape ... enhanced by my telephoto len's flight to the top of distant mountains otherwise inaccessible.

        Anecdote: Cathedrals & Canyon de Chelly: The full view of down a cathedral's main aisle smoothly focusing closer and closer on the altar, and then, soaring high above to normally unseen detail. [ytlk: CdeS, Leon Cath] 

 Long view down into Canyon de Chelly’s deep canyon pulling back to pause directly across the canyon, and slowly focusing closer and closer on the far wall until a small square grows into an ancient small rock wall building nestled in a crevice 400’ above the canyon floor.  [ytlk: Canyon de Chelly]


        Anecdote:  Machu PIcchu:  EX: soon as you walk up trail from the ticket office to the large Shepard’s hut
plateau, UR struckby size & grandeur, &  uniqueness, (Of course, my reaction also reflects  VIDs /PIKs I have seen in my lifetime)   

       Anecdote: Varanassi’s cremations at the Ganges River on a festival day.

    b. video captures & discovers small artistic details in museums & churches too high to be easily seen or that guides don’t have time to point out. I also search out the intimate cultural things that help define that culture adding my observations as I film.

       Anecdote: Bayeaux, Normandy: For example, in Normandy’s Bayeaux I videoed many little sculptured brass figurines (1 ½” – 2” tall) that hold the home’s exterior shutters open during the day.

    c. Discover details and perspectives, not easily seen from a great distance in churches or high mountaintop glaciers.

         Anecdote: Man statue high on a church wall that I discovered with video's telephoto lens for future investigation.

         Anecdote: Argentina's high Andes mountain waterfall: [ytlk: CdeS, Leon Cath]

    d. recall/record in-the-moment reflections & questions that I can research in the future. recapture some of the thrill of discovery and exploration.

        Anecdote: Western Australia between Perth and Broome: I let my video camera run for 5-10 minutes so I can remember &  ‘feel’ that desolation of time and landscape;  interminable hours of nothingness

    e. record minute nuance detail notes verbally in context so each detail is understood in the total context. & so don't forget.

         Anecdote: Saqswamen (aka Sexy women) Small details (random 6” square indentations on huge Saxywoman Inca stones.

    f. record the unusual most never see:

        Anecdote: the walk between the two dome layers of Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral in Florence.

OTOH: ----

    1. Few travel facts or site facts: that's what guidebooks & google are for.     

    2. My narration is spontaneous, unrehearsed, diary-like & in-the-moment speaking to MYSELF ....years into my future in my recliner remembering.    RATHER THAN: well-rehearsed,  pumped-up enthusiasm for short, cherry-picked video clips pushing you to “Subscribe“. 

    3. NO music background added to 'punch up' the excitement. They stand or fall on their own. ng at-the-moment descriptions, reflection & questions.

Music background: very little while I hiked/walked; so, if you want, play your own choice of appropriate music. Best of all worlds. 😀


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