Nam Tran 🖼️
There are certain instances when a photo reminds me of how important it is to trust gut instincts. This is one of them. It was my day off and I’d started my typical morning stroll with camera in hand. Usually something or other will strike me as interesting within the first several minutes. A newspaper flipped to a shocking heading on the ground. A biker wearing an outfit with a colorful pattern. The way light casted shadows of trees on nearby fences. That sort of thing. However, I came back 3 hours later having taken absolutely zero photos. I also made the rookie mistake of carrying only one water bottle instead of the usual two. This meant I was faced with a creative drought on top of dehydration. A losing battle through and through.
As I entered our cul-de-sac, there was a recliner chilling on my neighbor’s lawn which caught my eye. Whether it pulled me in because of brimming artistic potential or the fact that my legs were dead is another topic entirely. I initially found it interesting, but decided it wasn’t something worth snapping a picture of since I’d seen similar things all the time. That was until I made it several steps up my impossibly steep driveway and glanced back. Now, framed by the plants between the neighbor’s house and ours, the recliner took on an entirely new level of visual interest.
The name “Sunbathing” came about moments before submitting because “Recliner on Grass” seemed a little TOO on the nose. In hindsight, I realized the centerpiece was angled in such a way which made me imagine an invisible person kicking back while enjoying the Sun’s warmth. One could get all philosophical and say the juxtaposition between the recliner’s pristine condition with its discarded circumstance speaks on consumerism. And how, people often buy things not for the value said things will add to their lives, but for aesthetic appeal. Once that appeal fades, the items gets tossed even though there is nothing wrong with quality or function. That being said, this is still just a picture of a chair with a lizard on it.
About the Artist
Nam Hoang Tran is a writer and photographer in Orlando, Florida. His work appears in various places and collectively at www.namhtran.com. He enjoys soufflés.