Upload & Sell: On
Funny, "McMansion" depends a lot on which side of the economic fence one sits on. A few years ago I was asked to shoot a neighborhood in Houston that was designed for families moving from apartments into single family home ownership. The entry price was under 100k. The agency that sent me to do the project made a number of tongue in cheek remarks about what a great time I was going to have and that I really had my work cut out for me, ho ho. I thought about it all the way down to Houston and it was one of those times God spoke very clearly to me. The message was, "Don't let Me catch you thinking you are above shooting these homes, and don't let Me hear you joining in on any of the chiding, as a matter of fact, keep your eyes and ears open because there's a lesson in this assignment."
I arrived and began setting up in the first model. The assignment would last four days and there were six models. All were around 900 to 1,100 square feet and they were very basic. As I noted before, these were designed and priced to allow someone who had very little hope of ever getting themselves, or their family out of apartment living. I did what I do when God takes time to really speak to me, I quietly went about my work and kept my eyes and ears open. About an hour after I began lighting and shooting, a guy and his wife and their three children walked through the front door. The first thing I heard was the wife gasp at how beautiful this little home was, then the kids began running from room to room getting "dibbs" on which one would be theirs if they were lucky enough to ever have a home like this one. Somewhere in the middle of their self guided tour, I overheard the husband and wife talking about what a "dream" it would be to settle into a home like this with their kids.
Over the balance of the assignment, that scenario replayed a couple dozen times, only the faces and the number of kids changed. Humbling? You bet! The message was loud and clear and I have not forgotten it for a second. When I packed everything up and headed north at the end of the week I remembered the rest of the conversation we had on the trip down, the part about not joining in with any sarcastic remarks when I delivered the product to the agency. The account rep and designer were all tuned up to have a good old time with me about the "downscale" shoot. I began by saying, "Let me tell you what I experienced in Houston this week..........".
I like it when God speaks to me so clearly, like He did the week after Glenn was killed. It's not always easy, in fact rarely so, but it is a a faith building exercise like few others.
Edited on Apr 18, 2013 at 01:30 AM · View previous versions