Fade to Black

When Metallica’s first ballad Fade to Black was released, it faced a strong backlash. The song tackles depression and suicidal thoughts, which were definitely taboo topics back in 1984. But let’s be honest, they pretty much still are nowadays. Many people were extremely critical of the lyrics, claiming that the song promotes suicide. There was even an urban legend going around that some kids committed suicide precisely because of this song. Even I remember that this story was going around in the early 2000s when I was a teen listening to Metallica.

But when James Hetfield himself spoke about the song, he said that the band had received hundreds of letters from kids who claimed that Fade to Black had saved them. I imagine them standing on the edge of a cliff, and this song pulling them back. As for my experience with this song, I remember that Fade to Black became one of my favorites around the age of 14. I was blown away by the lyrics. I wanted to share my impressions with mom so I even translated the lyrics to Serbian for her. I also remember the worried look in her eyes, though, but she had no reason for it. As you can see, I’m alive and I’m writing this.

I believe James’ story about the letters. I believe that Fade to Black has indeed grabbed many people by the shirt and pulled them back from the cliff’s edge, instead of pushing them over it. Because when you hear a song about depression, you can relate to it. You realize that someone out there understands you and feels the same as you. You find out that you’re not crazy. And that you’re not alone.

I was pulled by the shirt by songs, photos, jokes, and stories of everyone who used them to speak up about their weaknesses. And I will be forever grateful for that. Thanks to these people, I’ve realized that I’m not alone, I’m not insane, and most importantly: that there’s nothing wrong in asking for help.

So, people, talk about depression. Talk about your mood disorders, about all serious and less serious conditions, doubts, and fears you go through. Talk about these topics, write songs and poems, take photos, paint your feelings… You will pull someone out there from the edge of a cliff without even knowing. And there’s no greater good deed than saving someone’s life.

If you’re depressed and/or have suicidal thoughts, here you can find a global list of suicide hotlines.

Don’t cross the line between saving memories for yourself and ruining them for others

Some people like capturing candid moments hoping to take some artistic and meaningful shots. Others want to preserve precious memories so they grab their camera or phone during the very creation of those memories. And yet others are “doing it for the Gram,” shooting every single moment of their lives.

I have nothing against either of them. In fact, I sometimes belong to each of these groups. However, I believe that many people are crossing the line between saving memories for themselves and ruining them for everyone else. You may be doing it as well and not even being aware of it. So, I hope you’ll to read this article and reconsider your use of a phone or camera in certain situations.

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Seven odd side effects of moving home that nobody told you about

If I had to describe moving home with one word, I’d say it’s a very intense experience. It requires a whole lot of planning, thinking, and organization. It involves a lot of stress and takes up a lot of your time. But these are the things we already know, right?

After recently moving into the fifth apartment in three years, I started noticing other things, those that few people mention when they talk about moving home. Other than stress, excitement, planning, and organization, this significant event in your life involves some quirks, joys, and side effects that can be annoying, but also pretty funny.

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Shooting concerts with your phone: did you REALLY have a good time?

Risking to sound cheesy and cliché, I must say: I couldn’t live without music. It adds flavor to my everyday life and a soundtrack to most of my memories. When I go to a concert, it’s the best night out I can imagine. But, concerts in the 21st century come with a phenomenon I rant about whenever I can: smartphones.

Every time I go to a concert, I feel like I’m the last of the Mohicans: someone who has come to a concert to enjoy the music, sing along, dance, cry, laugh, and clap my hands until my palms are numb. Other than listening, I’m there to watch the performance, too. But it seems that most people prefer watching the entire show through the tiny displays of their phones. And this time, I won’t even bitch about how those people are blocking everyone else’s view. I wanna discuss whether or not they can even enjoy the show if they watch it entirely through a smartphone screen.

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30

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Today is my 30th birthday. It’s a scary age when you’re a woman, especially if you live in the Balkans. The society, your parents, relatives and acquaintances expect you to get married and have kids by this age. To take care of yourself, your loved one, and your younglings. And if this hasn’t happened, you can feel the pressure even if no one says anything. You understand and feel that you’re getting older, but on the other hand – you’re still so young at heart.

It’s a confusing age. I’ve even heard it being called “second puberty.” You may also feel a little confused in your early 30s, just like me. And if you do, be sure that you’re not the only one. These are some of my concerns, and maybe they’ll at least help others feel less lonely.

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Laurel

Yesterday, I felt the scent of fresh laurel for the first time.

I was walking up and down the streets and staircases of Herceg Novi, allowing myself to go astray and enjoying the exploration of a city completely new to me. I didn’t put my earphones and played music – I didn’t want to lose myself in it and miss something. I focused on my sense of sight and let it guide me, so it can point me to the scenes worth photographing. And they were everywhere.

I spent a few hours wandering around and taking photos. I got a bit tired, so I finally decided do head back to the place where I was staying. While I was walking up the last narrow staircase, I was already somewhere else in my mind. And all of a sudden, I was brought back to the real world by an extraordinary scent.

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“When will you have kids?”

Today, an article and the fact that I share opinion with more people than I though inspired me to try and answer all of my and other people’s questions about why I don’t want to have kids.

I talked about this with many of my female friends, because all of us are about the same age, in long relationships or married. We are approaching, or we’re just over the “scary age of 30.” So, the comments, questions and gossip about our life choices have begun. Why on Earth don’t we still have children?

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Prime lens – limitation or possibility?

I had an interesting discussion in a photography group on Facebook a few days ago. It started with my question about the 35 mm lens, and I ended up discussing zoom lenses with a member of the group. He said that, as an event photographer, he does not have the luxury of moving around and focusing with his feet. I support him and agree with him – up to some point.

I am not an event photographer, so I have the luxury to experiment. A while ago I was in a situation where my prime lens was put to a test in event photography – and I believe it passed.

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