The more tragedy befell him, the more his work turned from observation to self-expression. He returned to photography in the '70s, painting words on his photographs or scratching them into the negatives. "Words," he says in the film, "are for people to understand more what the artist is saying." Consider a series of shots of a wooden pole outside his house in Mabou, "For Andrea Who Died 1954 1974" inscribed over them, or "Sick of Goodby's," in Frank's book Lines of My Hand. He's right; the words, rather than the images, make his grief plain as day.