Esse. DIEM. Synchronicity.

Copyright Paul Corbit Brown 2013

Copyright Paul Corbit Brown 2013

“Syncronicity is: I was reading your blog the other evening when I was in Rome, and a few hours later, I decided to take a walk thru the streets (actually it was the wee hours of the morning) and I found this…”

— Paul Corbit Brown, May 14, 2013


Paul Corbit Brown has been photographing since he was twelve years old.  His work has carried him throughout the United States, Mexico, Jamaica,  Russia, Israel, Palestine, Kurdistan (Northern Iraq), Kenya, Rwanda, Laos, Thailand, Indonesia,  and most recently Haiti. Brown has a gift for simultaneously accepting the humanity of each person he depicts and unsentimentally sizing them up.  His photographs are clear-eyed looks at the difficult situations the individuals portrayed live in, but because of their directness and compassion they are hauntingly beautiful. 

What’s Mine Is (not) Yours

Last week’s post Hey Irony wrangled a bit with the wild west of the Internet, knowledge v. information, and the often confusing environment of intellectual property.  After a cascade of inner conflicts, I’ve decided to take a new approach to imagery used on Esse Diem.

Copy Copy Copy....Right

I try to use my own photographs when I can, but have often fallen back on Google images to represent some of the themes in various posts.  I have struggled with finding some great pictures that in my heart of hearts I know must “belong” to someone, but when I find them they are so long-lost to their original source and uncredited I can’t credit them either.  Frankly, I’ve just gotten tempted by the easy access to things that don’t belong to me. 

I think some people call that stealing.

I rationalized some images because I thought surely they would be credited if anyone cared; but after reading the article that inspired Hey Irony, I’ve realized that is far from the case.  There are no rules governing most of the Internet and therefore most blogging, yet even when there are no rules there are ethics in play.  It’s true on the Internet and it’s true everywhere.  Ethics are harder because there is no one to give you a black and white answer, so often we shrug and say, “Well, I didn’t know the rules.”

What I do know is that I revere the concept of intellectual property.  The image of Jeff Bridges, for example, came from the International Movie Data Base and clearly is an artistic treatment of a photograph taken by a professional.  It is beautiful, creative, unique….and it belongs to someone who should get credit for it.  If I can’t find that person I need to find another solution.

This week, the solution at Esse Diem is original drawings by my husband Jamie.  Among other things, he is an artist who draws and sketches daily, writes poetry, and regularly creates delicious meals for friends and family.  His drawings are spontaneous, clever, and whimsical.  I am honored to have his visual interpretations of the post themes this week.