Ok, call me a romantic, but really, when I saw the photo of the young couple who were caught kissing during the riots in Vancouver two nights ago, my heart melted. According to news reports, she, a Canadian girl, had been knocked over by a policeman’s shield and had hit her head on the pavement. Her boyfriend, an Australian, was comforting her and simply kissed her as part of his comforting. This is when the photographer, Richard Lam, caught this beautiful moment in time.
Of course this made me think of other moving kisses, most namely the VJ Day kiss by Alfred Eisenstaedt that became a symbol of the end of World War II.
These pieces are certainly beautiful. The skill of the artists and the subject matter combined make them a pleasure to behold. But, for me, they don’t have the same effect as the photos above. We are fortunate to have the art of photography to capture such beautiful moments in time which otherwise, except to the people involved, would be lost to the rest of the world. Perhaps such intimacy isn’t meant for the world, yet, I think it makes us pause and smile, and for a moment have faith in humanity. Daily, we are bombarded with photos of strife and death and perhaps that is why we are so drawn to the tenderness and romance of a spontaneous kiss.