Photo series ‘Totem’ by Jason McGroarty

I believe that all photography should have an element of surprise, something that makes you stop and stare into the depths of the image while your mind develops it’s own recipe for the creation and inspiration behind it. In the literal sense a Totem is a natural object or animal that is believed by a particular society to have spiritual significance and that is adopted by it as an emblem. This project combines this animal symbolism with dramatic candid images of urban locations to represent my change from a boy into a young man and the many obscure moments and encounters that have market the journey.

My mother was a very strong and spiritual woman, she taught me to question the meanings in moments of wonder as there is always a message behind it. I will always remember the moment that I came into contact with a wild fox when walking a dimly lit street on the outskirts of my hometown. Through project Totem I want to replicate that heart stopping moment when you come into contact with a wild animal in an unexpected location, when the wild breaches the barriers of the big city it reminds us that we are not as safe as we like to think, that the unexpected should be expected.

My experience with symbolism has given me a sense of mysticism to many encounters throughout in my life and everyone once and a while I look back at a certain point in my life and ask a question. A question of why, why did this happen, why do these things happen and most importantly why did it happen to me? Good or bad the meaning always resonates within me and as a result of always questioning the meaning, I have grown into a better person.

From innocence, love, confusion, fear, hate and joy, project Totem depicts the depths of my ever growing personal development. I hope that those who view this story enjoy it, but more importantly I hope that they too can experience symbolism in the obscure and normal. I hope that after viewing this project, people will embark upon their own journey of discovery and symbolism. Says Jason.

You can view the full project and many other works here: here.

Fox - SmallOwl - SmallHare - SmallBuck - SmallRaccoon - Small

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