as to what makes for better pictures stood out even more clearly in my
mind as friends, relatives, and former
students shared memories in the Berkeley Hills garden of the home where
my mother had lived her last sixty years. One ex-student
and renowned teacher related how my mother used to say, "I don't teach
the cello. The cello can't learn. I teach the human being."
She described my mother's interest as less in prize proteges than in
the development of human potential through unconventional
approaches that allow people, "whether they are aged seven or seventy,
amateur or professional, farmer or nun, to cross personal
hurdles toward satisfaction when practicing their chosen art." I
remember coming home from school to find her crawling on the floor
with a middle-aged Nobel laureate to demonstrate how his hands could
carry lots of weight while his fingers could still move freely.
She never confused physical tightness, or mental tightness, with lack
of innate ability.
- Excerpt from
Galen Rowell's Inner Game of Outdoor Photography, by Galen Rowell