It was an autumn day, cool and rain showers were frequent. In my neighboring town I had to do a few completions. Since I always have my camera with me, I looked around the small town to find someone for my photo project. But there was very little activity. Hardly anyone on the street. I was about to give up when I saw a young woman strolling through town with her dog. Both (the young woman and the dog) made a relaxed, friendly impression on me. No rush, no hectic, but very sympathetic. All this aroused my interest. Good prerequisites for addressing someone. I spoke to the young lady in front of an old half-timbered house. I introduced myself and my concerns and met Larissa and her dog Yoshi here in Hachenburg.
Larissa was very interested. After I had explained the meaning and purpose of the project and was also able to show my "The Human Family"-photos on my smartphone, Larissa agreed without hesitation to become part of my/our photo project.
I took the first photos in front of the wall of the half-timbered house. unfortunately the rain started again. So we fled into a house entrancey. We used this rain break to talk to each other and I was able to start my little interview here at this point.
Larissa lives very close to me and works here in Hachenburg at a marketing agency that creates websites, flyers, new logos, etc. for companies. She really enjoys her work, but Larissa wanted to be a veterinarian when she was a little child. But since Larissa is very compassionate, she couldn’t get used to the idea of putting animals to sleep.
Larissa describes herself (after some reflection) as spontaneous and honest (which doesn’t always go well with her fellow human beings, because some people don’t want to hear the truth).
Her friends would describe Larissa as animal loving and loyal. Larissa said, she always takes care of her friends.
Since we are still stuck in the pandemic, even if some people may not see it that way, I had to ask Larissa how she was coping with the Corona period. During Corona Larissa was still studying (media management). The first three semesters were still "normal" studies, e.g. with lectures in the lecture hall. But then Corona came and from that point on everything took place online at home. Asked about her feelings about Corona, Larissa replies that she was very careful at the beginning. In the end it was just annoying. The completion of the study could not be celebrated, the public presentation of certificates after graduation did not take place. The young people have been robbed of so many things that can simply never be made up for. There is no reset button for these important things in a person’s life. The vaccinations that took place then persuaded Larissas to go out and meet friends, because after 18 months at home, everyone’s blanket falls on their heads. Of course, when Larissa visited her grandparents, she had herself tested beforehand, which was of course good on the one hand. But overall Corona is very drastic and challenging.
What really upsets you about our society was my next question. Larissa: There are, for example, these extreme ways of thinking, these corona deniers who claim that Corona was invented by the state, these people who exclude everyone who is not heterosexual; who believe feminism means being against men; who polemicize against the Covid-19 vaccinations, but who do not really deal with the topics at all, ignore verified facts and science; who live in their tangled bubble and only take on the outlandish thoughts of the haters unthinkingly.
In contrast, Larissa makes happy to go out, of course with her dog Yoshi. Larissa likes to take photos, mostly of her dog, but also of others. (Later Larissa showed me her animal photos on her smartphone; have a look here: www.instagram.com/sekundenbruchteile_). Happiness is also: Get out, get in the car and drive away. The feeling of freedom makes Larissa happy.
When I asked what Larissa couldn’t do without (e.g. on a lonely island), Larissa answered without a millisecond’s hesitation: I can’t live without my dog; because there (on the island) my mobile phone wouldn’t work anyway, then I take a good book instead. (for example actually Larissa has two books written by Sebastian Fitzek on her list to read)
Of course, Larissa is also interested in music. Here she is not tied to one genre of music, she can get enthusiastic about almost any genre of music. It’s a matter of personal momentary phase. At the moment Larissa has a weakness for German rock, together with her friend. Larissa may not have a favorite song, but there is one song that means a lot to her, and that’s Rod Stewart’s "Sailing." This was Larissa’s mom’s favorite song, and she was buried with it and that’s why Larissa connects a lot with this song and has a high emotional meaning..
If you could choose anyone in the world, who would you invite to dinner at your home?. And why? Larissa’s answer: First of all, of course, my mom. But if I leave that out, it’s someone like Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, who has done a lot in their life and has a lot of exciting stories to tell, but who has also made a lot of mistakes. In other words, people who polarize and therefore have a lot to tell.
Larissa’s biggest challenges in her young life were certainly studying under Covid-19 conditions and then of course the death of her mother. Larissa had to take care of her brother, her mother’s friends, especially her mother’s best female friend and her grandmother. Larissa had a lot to do, taking care of everyone and being there for the others.
Where do you want to be in 10 years? (this does not necessarily mean a place, but a life goal, a life dream, a perspective), I asked Larissa. Answer: preferably a house with a nice big garden. The rest will come up, I’m not looking at the moment.
What is your favorite place? Larissa likes to be by the sea without wanting to commit to a specific sea. She likes to discover new places and tries to explore the world together with Yoshi.
Larissa’s motto in life is to think always, no matter what happens, I don’t know what it’s good for. Even if it is a bad stroke of fate, maybe after 10 years the realization can come, that this has led to having achieved something specific, new, hopefully positive. Of course, you don’t know if it would have been better the other way around. E.g. a separation from a partner; it’s painful, but maybe in 10 years I’ll think, fortunately there was a breakup, otherwise I wouldn’t have what I have now.
Larissa’s advice to the people of her generation: not so much criticizing other people and dealing with their mistakes, but focusing better on yourself, pursuing your own goals better than looking at what others are doing.
In the meantime it had stopped raining again. So we could continue taking pictures. Because Larissa had no time pressure and was totally relaxed and open-minded, we decided to continue shooting at another location in Hachenburg. It was really nice, Larissa obviously enjoyed being in front of the camera. We tried out several settings and backgrounds and everyone involved (including Yoshi) enjoyed our little spontaneous shoot.
Thank you, dear Larissa, for your trust, your patience and the time you invested in my photo project after you finished work. It was a lot of fun for me and I’m glad that we had the opportunity to talk and take pictures in such a relaxed and open-minded way. Thank youuuu so much.
This is my 84th post to my project "The Human Family". (Before that I already had 100 interesting encounters in the course of my photo project and the group "100 Strangers") You can find more photos of other photographers in the community "The Human Family" here:
Tagged: , empathetic , caring , Larissa , The Human Family , Stranger , streetportrait , strangers , portrait , conversation , encounter , city , Canon , smile , outdoor , woman , photoshooting , Canon EOS R5 , Canon RF 70-200mm F4 L IS USM , Hachenburg