We stood there, scoping the steel birds that flew across Promenade des Anglais’ blood-orange sky. Life was happening, quiet and unnoticed. The beach’s borrowed spectators grateful to be in the present, or now the past. A never-ending transit of wandering people, without purpose or a destination. Conversation confused within the waves, creating a soft noise that swept over the shore. An innocence was upon us and we were none the wiser.
It wasn’t until returning home that I had discovered what had taken place exactly one week after visiting this location. Eighty-seven people were confirmed dead after a truck was purposefully drove into crowds celebrating Bastille Day. The alternative reality that I could have found myself within hung over me for weeks. If I had I clicked a row down, seven days later, a week in advance… I too could have been amongst the named. It was for this reason that these negatives remained both undeveloped and untouched for several months. I hoped the negatives would come out blank. I wished I had accidentally left my lens cap on, no matter how uncharacteristic. I yearned for these images to be a miraculous failure, for the potential joy of my images was now overshadowed with a survivor’s guilt.