Leaving A Mark

Nicole Mason

Photo Essay

An essay from The Maker's Impression written and photographed by Nicole Mason.

We all create for different reasons, whether to pass the time, to make a living, or as some means of understanding. But there is another reason humans create. Some call it legacy, a representative we leave behind of what our world was like; the way we lived; and what mattered most to us.

What we choose to make offers a glance into how we see, hear, and feel. They are our mirrors, our obsession. They bear witness to what we see in the world, that no one else does – the emotions and ideas – whose exact interpretation is impossible to replicate. We believe these objects and our abilities to skillfully sculpt them into being are our highest calling, the ultimate achievement to a life spent on creative endeavor. They contain both our view of the world, as well as our place in it; our purpose.

It is through these objects and the process of refining our abilities to make them that we are constantly seeking connection, discovering traces of the familiar, and sharing stories with one another. Within them, there lies a tangible self-portrait – one that we’re constantly recreating, revising and shaping. This reflection of ourselves develops over time, and when someone else sees it, encounters this visual display of our own heart and mind, it often allows them to see a likeness of their own soul; opens an eye we did not yet know we had. To those who share that view, to those whose searching and longing, it is a meeting of solace at the sight of our creation. For me, that is enough.

The work is our transmission into the world, this beautiful, messy, often chaotic declaration. This ongoing collection of memories and experiences hiding behind our eyes, beneath our bones, become the bold hand we extend to the world, engaging the unknown. Holding it out is the only way we know how to surpass the limitations of time, to hold on to a hope that we can be known to a world beyond us – our hope that faces we’ll never see, will see ours, and know how we fell in love with the world.

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