Symbolism and Perception

June 14, 2014

Chain overlapping a syringe on concrete block.

Copyright 2014 Kevin P. Mick Photography. All rights reserved.

This is likely one of the most symbolic photographs I have made as the two main compositional elements complement each other in such a way as to suggest a particular interaction.

It was the chain that first caught my attention and it was only after stopping to look more closely that I saw the syringe.  Having been a former chemical dependency counselor, my first impression was that it was the remains from an episode of IV drug use, for example, heroin, in which case the chain then serves as the metaphor for addiction.  However, it is important to recognize just how strongly prior life experiences often influence current perceptions and one must take care not to jump to conclusions based on a single bit of data.  After all, there is no hard evidence linking this particular syringe to drug use.  It is also possible that it had been used in the management of diabetes, and in that scenario, the chain represents the (often) life-long issue of disease management.

In either case, what is suggested is the inexorable anchoring that diseases create for those experiencing them.

There is, of course, at least one major difference between IV drug use and diabetes.  For the former, the needle serves as a continuation-for the latter, mitigation.

Take care.


One Response to “Symbolism and Perception”

  1. Morris Says:

    Nice symbolism there.
    I would also like to think of the chain as a symbol for the legal consequences that would follow if the user of the syringe was using illegal drugs like you talked of heroine. Same case in the case of management of diabetes , which so many policies put in place to regulate safe disposal of bio – hazardous waste, one would face some kind of legal consequence for the careless disposal of the syringe. If in medical profession one would be professionally ‘chained’ by having their license revoked.
    Take care.

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