Sony RX1, 35mm f2 Carl Zeiss
ISO64, f/18, 1/125, raw
200W strobe on boom, over subject’s head, 60×60 soft-box
I feel my being a PhD in biomedical engineering as a second skin, and one that almost suffocates me every time I try to take it off.
Fact is, I didn’t mind leaving my job, even if this will mean interrupting my career and possibly ruining it forever, should I ever decide to go back to science in the future. What oppresses me and makes me anxious is to throw away all the years spent on the books and all the sacrifices I did to pass each and every university class. I remember all of my exams, they were equally horrible, some of them almost impossible, and, while my friends in other faculties were enjoying their “lighthearted university years”, I was missing all their fun and getting very serious.
Why did I do that? I interrogated myself on this very question many times in the last few years, and I now believe that it was mostly not to argue with my parents. They wanted me to go to university, for a starter, and to take a degree that would fit me into the job-market. Studying Philosophy, my favorite topic, was out of the equation, and I ended up applying for engineering because everybody knows that a degree in engineering in Italy means to never have to worry about finding a job, plus it is considered to be the most difficult topic, so just by getting to the end of it I would have demonstrated that I wasn’t that lazy and inconstant boy my parents were always referring to me as.
That’s basically it, I studied all this crazy stuff to prove to my parents (and myself) that I was good enough to do it. I never really liked it, and I don’t know how I hoped to get to like any job about it. But my parents were eventually proud of me. Plus, it is true that I was lazy and inconstant, and those university years changed me because there was no way I was going to pass even one of the exams without some serious dose of self-discipline, hard work, and full time dedication.
Now I’m back were I started, with the difference is that I’m not eighteen anymore, and I have gained this enormous set of knowledge which I’ll most probably never use in the photography/art business. And I’m wondering, should I lose this second skin to better see who I am, or is all of this going to be part of myself forever?