Leaving a legacy

A bit morbid? Maybe I've been watching too much Game of Thrones, but who knows how many episodes we have left of our own stories before our character gets cut unexpectedly from the series.

Life felt limitless as a kid. Even just summer holiday from school almost felt limitless on that joyful day of heading home for the summer break. Not so much now, a 'few' years later.

Some people make a conscious effort to regularly reflect on their own mortality. A bit of the Dead Poets Society philosophy. To remember that time is short and to maintain an urgency in what they do. I've heard a few successful individuals say that they make a habit of reading obituaries on a daily basis as a reminder.

We might not know how many episodes we have left, but at least we still get to write each one.

Which makes me think about what I want to leave behind. Maybe 'legacy' is a selfish term, but surely it's something positive to desire. To have left a mark, to have meant something and made a difference. To leave behind a life rich in experiences and interactions, love and laughter. To be able to look back, if that's possible, with satisfaction rather than regrets.

Is a legacy something physical? Is it the pictures, the art, the writing, the things that we've created? Is that what we want to last? Perhaps, but it's our actions too that I think create the strongest legacy. Or maybe it's our actions that really are the art, rather than the physical end product. The genuine love we show, the lives touched, the people impacted by what we do and say.

I'd love to leave behind great art. I've made images that I'm pleased with, sometimes proud of. But to have a positive effect on the people around us; this is the real art where new stories are made.

 Brooklyn Bridge, from Brooklyn Bridge Park, NYC. September 2015.

Brooklyn Bridge, from Brooklyn Bridge Park, NYC. September 2015.