Birds on a rooftop

Birds on Rooftop (black and white photograph)
Birds on Rooftop (black and white photograph) by Paul Politis (2020)
Birds on Rooftop (black and white photograph)
Birds on Rooftop (black and white photograph) by Paul Politis

“Complete isolation — that is what the Outsider is driving at. He knows that, if he could only achieve it, there is a completely different way of seeing the world — a way so different that one might almost say that it would no longer be the same world. The Outsider’s final problem is to become a visionary. The first and most obvious step is to cut himself off from other people, so as not to be conditioned by their way of seeing.”
— Colin Wilson, Religion and the Rebel

This photo is an anomaly among the photos I’ve been posting in the last while in that there are actual sentient creatures pictured. I don’t think there has been a living being in a photo I’ve posted on this blog in a long time. It’s not entirely blameable on COVID-abandoned streets, my photos have for most of my life tended to focus on the inanimate. Today’s photo feels to me on some level to share something in mood or spirit with some of the b&w photos I’ve posted over the past few months; a feeling of solitude. It’s that one bird, framed and isolated from the rest by the power lines. I imagine he must be perched there, in this brief moment of rest, pondering just what it means to be a bird.


  1. Had to smile with this one… mostly as I feel that my photography (when I am actually doing any, which I haven’t in too long a while), that my images are always entirely void of human life… and actually thought it was the contrary of what you said, that yours are too, when I feel you are the opposite, and are a lot better at having some human element in your photos… but then gazing at your recents along the right side here, yeah, I guess you haven’t for awhile.

    For me, I think it just reflects the beauty that I may see and find in this world, is so minus humans, i.e., the natural world… though, to be fair and honest, man made things too upon occasion. Also, though I feel my images, a good deal of the time, need that little something else, extra in them, to complete them, make them better, whole… and a good portion of those times, feel it would be a human element within them that would provide it… But, for the most part though, it is a thoroughly conscious choice of not wanting any humans in them, feeling they’ll muck it all up.

    I just find that more and more, I am just wanting to disassociate from my fellow humans… just so much disagreement with them, their evil, apathy, hatred, ignorance, hubris, conceit, shortsightedness, narcissism, that I just frankly don’t want to capture them, and have them be preserved in my images… as well as lately, also just in my life, as I seem to remove myself more and more from society.

    Anyway, I digress…

    • I can surely relate to being wary and weary of other people. When I’m out with my camera I unfailingly find that I’ve wandered away from areas where there are people, not toward them. It’s helpful — imperative — to remember that all those deficiencies you listed are inside each of us, not just other people.

      We’re going through a bit of a breakdown in the West but I’m still hopeful for a backlash where our societies reassert a commitment to freedom of speech, which is under grave threat. Without it there can’t be any dialogue, and without dialogue, well, we all can see the bizarro land that brings us to. That still may not be enough. The future does not look bright.

      • Hey, speak for yourself 😏

        Okay… maybe apathy… definitely ignorance… all right, and maybe hubris too… but, not to a degree, and with the narcissism, to inflict on others… myself, yes, in a heartbeat, but others, no way, never.

        Like you, I too am hopeful and believe that society will reassert itself in the right direction… but, not until after the chickens come home to roost to force it to, unfortunately.

        Until then, we just got to thine own selves be true, and not have them drag us down with them… which for me, that entails just more and more disassociating myself from them, their negativity, self-destruction, tuning them and their world out… I have enough of that myself, for myself, thank you very much, don’t need to be latched on to, and pulled down by their’s also.

        • I highly recommend solitude, especially if a person uses that time to look honestly at themselves. More of that would surely be a good thing. But I mostly enjoy being alone; many people, I’m informed, don’t like it so much, haha. My life has changed comparatively little because of covid, for example.

          • 😄 Mine neither… just a day, time, like any other day, time 😁

            Agree though, I know people who are just so blatantly afraid of being alone, solitude, quiet, that always need to fill it all, so as to not have to face, hear, the silence, and/or whatever their mind/heart/soul/spirit may have to say (or again, may not, and just be this cold dark void of silence). Again, like this past year plus of Covid, has been absolutely not one thing different than any other time of my life… but, have heard, read, the collective angst, shared – whatever, of having been through this, like the quarantining, alone time, has been this almost kind of like ordeal… not judging, just have to chuckle at the, natural (obviously), vast disparity, and lives, we all individually lead and live… the individual shoes we all walk in, and so unaware of the ones that others walk in.

            Now, I AM babbling! And again, unlike you, my babbling is just that – nonsensical, oh for god’s sake, just shut up already! blibber-blabberin’ nonsense 🙄🤦🏻‍♂️

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