When I moved to Canada in 2009, I worked with a real interesting dude named Khaleed Juma. Khaleed was some random assistant/intern at my Coca Cola job for the Vancouver Olympics, but the way he acted and spoke to us, we all thought he was basically the head of the whole company. He spoke with huge enthusiasm, we soaked up everything he was feeding us and he made you think you could really do anything. After we became friends, he posted a picture of him in London jumping off a British Post Box.
I just thought this was the coolest thing. It's like an art form, it captures the excitement, the foreignness, the random passersby, the energy. I thought "Man I should do that".
This is not an original idea at all by the way, at the time I thought Khaleed had invented it, but alas it has been done all the way back since the 1950's. Phillipe Halsman was a famous photographer and as a personal project when he was photographing famous subjects, he would ask them to jump for him.
"I was motivated by a genuine curiosity.After all, life has taught us to control and disguise our facial expressions, but it has not taught us to control our jumps.I wanted to see famous people reveal in a jump their ambition or their lack of it, their self-importance or their insecurity, and many other traits."
I only later found out about Phillipe and his work, but at the time, I still thought Khaleed's jump was a great way to catalog the places I had been and the exhilarating rush of travelling and exploring new lands. Here is my first jump photo, taken in Tofino, BC in February 2011.
It took about 5 takes to get the right shot of the legs in the air and the right background. I was so happy to have taken one that I thought demonstrated the feeling I got when I could explore a new place. I was determined to make this thing my b**ch. My only frustration was, I had already travelled to so many places and had failed to capture those moments in this newfound way. This was kind of heartbreaking in a weird way, and something that still bums me out. However, I have made a huge effort to capture as many opportunities as possible and now I like to try share those moments by jumping with my friends and family and enjoy the moment of energy and excitement with them.
I have created a project which now takes submissions to spread the wonderful feeling of energy and excitement and captures wonderful moments of joy and beauty in the landscape and surroundings. There is something about the Jump Photo that holds emotion, kind of like catching a laugh, or a tear.
I hope you like what I have created. And more importantly, I hope you participate. Take a Jump shot, it is actually surprisingly rewarding and a great way of capturing the moment.