How do photographs and images inspire us?

I was scrolling through a great site recommended by a dear friend,, and came across this photo.


I sat and stared at the woman. Her head it angled toward the sun, her eyes are closed and she has what appears to be a secretive yet joyful smile on her face. What is she thinking?

As I begin to think about this stories start to form in my head. She’s a strong, single woman headed west in the early 1900’s. She’s just stepped off a train and feels the warm west coast sun on her face for the first time. She’s imaging what this new place has in store for her. She’s blissful and excited. This is her new life, her story is just beginning.

What do you see when you look at her?

Am I imagining her this way because I’m in a thought mood? If I were angry or upset would I see something else? Does my emotional state dictate what I see or has the picture dictated how I feel when I see it?


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