Thursday, April 19, 2012


I love photography. Always have. Capturing lives, faces, places, and time.  I look back at  things cherished and I find them in my photographs. 

I first realized it when I lived in Seoul, Korea.  In every corner, window, face, and shadow there were beauteous things that needed to be captured for all time.  For one year, I traveled extensively throughout Korea, Hong Kong, Japan, Taipei, and Thailand.  I loved each and every moment of it.  However, capturing a photograph also meant capturing a soul.  And this was definitely frowned upon.  Except for their children.  I could photograph the children endlessly, but what I wanted was to photograph the pride and the courage and beauty and the wrinkles of a people alien to me.  I recall an outdoor market in Taipei where I was intrigued by the vast array of fresh fish laid on the sidewalk.  I focused the lens and was ready to snap when the vendor, a lady, grabbed the largest fish she could find and started chasing me down the road, beating the top of my head with the fish. 

I also recall, with more serious consequences, photographing a rally for the ousting of Chang Kai Shek by America.  I was young and naive and had no idea what was going on.  As I raised my camera to photograph the gathering,  a group of motorcycles began charging me - the target a blonde American.  The only thing that saved me was a train suddenly out of no where, placing me on one side of the tracks and the motorcycles on the other.  I made a hasty exit.  Later I learned what I had done and was blessed to have escaped at all.

Some days I pick up my camera and just start taking pictures.  Colors and shades, highlights and shadows awaken me to ordinary things, beautiful ordinary things. I find myself ridiculously happy over small treasures and gifts, weathered and worn, exquisite and fresh, things that no one else would find interesting in the least or walk by unnoticed. 

Little things make me happy.  Perhaps that is the creative spirit in me.  Perhaps I see things others don't for a reason.  They are moments...moments in time.  We all have them, but how many of us actually pay attention.  Attention to the beauty that surrounds us.

I walked out into the back yard yesterday to spend frisbee time with my dogs and breathe in the fresh air and soak in a bit of sunshine.  Three tiny pink flowers had just awakened.  They were stunning and just as ravenous to me as was the dragonfly on my garden fence.

Today notice the beauty that surrounds you.  Make a mental note or take a photograph and find life really does lie in the little the things that really matter.

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