I found an audio slideshow about a World War II veteran that was waiting to die. The Los Angeles Times did a fantastic job of telling his story. He felt he had lived long enough and had seen enough, and now he wants out.
The narrative is just about him. It doesn’t really tell his story from anyone else’s perspective, which I appreciate. It starts with him talking about being decrepit like the statue in his backyard. He moves on to his opinions and why he’s waiting to die.
The very first shot you see is that of the man in the story, Edwin Schneidman. It introduces us to the person talking and the person that the story is about. The last shot is another portrait of the man. You can see the age in his eyes, and it’s a very compelling photo. I like that it does tie the story together because it’s simply about him.
The photos told the story of the man. They showed the wear and age on him. They also showed more into his life than just the audio would have. There are a variety of shots from all over his house and a variety of shots of him.
There really isn’t any natural sound, which I really actually appreciate in someone telling their story. It’s supposed to be just about them and about their life, not about the sounds around them. There’s no music, no other voices, just this man and his stories.
There were crossfades but no movement within the photos. I actually prefer that because I feel like movement can be distracting. You want the person to take in your photos as a whole. If you want them to spend more time with them, then leave it on the screen for longer.
The pacing was slow, but I also really liked it to be slow. The story is about an old man and his journey. Old men move slow. The captions also added a lot to the photos. I believe that they used soundslides, because it wasn’t automatically popping up, which is frustrating. They really explain more about the settings.
The people in the shots are identified, but it’s really just about Schneidman and his life, so there aren’t that many people. The minimalistic feel of the slideshow was preferred.
Overall, I’d love to see more slideshows like this one. The transitions were good, the photos were good and the audio was good. It’s something that is simple, but so powerful. I don’t know that I would have done anything different had this been my own work. I prefer minimalist takes on things.