Being able to choose only one picture that is my favorite from the past eight weeks is a completely impossible task. Every time that I have taken a picture of something or someone here it quickly becomes my favorite picture…until I capture another moment in time or place that is special and worthy of remembering. The time here has been filled with countless moments like that. Times and places that I have tried to capture with a picture so that I can be reminded of their beauty, their tragedy, the feelings that they evoke. Of the people that I have been fortunate enough to share this place and this experience with. You try and capture these moments with a picture in the hopes that you will be able to convey a small bit of what you have seen and experienced with those who have not. However, in trying to choose my favorite photograph from our time here, I have come to realize that while sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words, sometimes two or three thousand words (which I always have…) and an entire picture book are needed. There is no way to pick just one photograph that I consider my favorite because each of the 1,833 pictures that I have taken (so far) is my favorite for a different reason. Yes, prepare yourself friends and family, you have 1,833 pictures to look at with about a thousand words per picture…and even that will only convey a small part of my time here.
For that reason, the picture that I have chosen to share is not one that stands above the others as my favorite, and is by no means the best picture that I have taken while here. Instead, it is simply one that conveys exactly how I feel about both Sarajevo and BiH. It not only captures how I feel about this place but why I do as well.
Sarajevo has a lot of amazing graffiti peppered on the sides of its buildings amongst bullet holes mortar blasts and the lives of everyday people. They are all beautiful in their own way and a number of my 1,833 pictures are of this graffiti. This particular graffiti I saw in an alley not far from the Sebilj in Bašĉaršija. It’s on the side of an unassuming old building and although there may be graffiti that is brighter or more complex, for me this picture perfectly captures the tone of Sarajevo and its people. They love their city. They would, and have, fought for their city. The conviction and pride behind this artwork is why I love this city. Despite the hardships that this city has seen, it is strong because of its residents and because of their conviction to defend what they love. Dedication like that sometimes seems hard to find in everyday life so being presented with it on the side of a building in a place whose people have seen so much seems like a moment, a feeling and a piece of art worthy of capturing with a picture. Since spending time here I love this city too.