Russia III: 2004-05
I lived in Vladimir, Russia, during the 2004-05 academic year, while I was teaching English at a private language school there. I moved there speaking no Russian whatsoever -- I thus had to learn enough to function in a hurry. These images are from that year -- in particular, Vladimir and nearby surrounding towns. I don't claim they're all great photos -- after all, people were suspicious when I tried to photograph with an SLR, and I ended up having to shoot primarily with a low quality point-and-shoot much of the time (and in 2005, digital point-and-shoots weren't what they are today, alas). It shows. But I share these anyway, because I'm so deeply attached to them -- not always the images themselves (though sometimes), but the culture and country they show. The more Russian you can read, the more sense some of these make -- ask me for stories and translations; I can tell stories for days. Looking back at them, it's hard to believe that was my life for a year. But it was, and my sense of what it means to be human in the world is richer for the experience.