The Beauty of Change
I know mine and mine know me: photographs, that is. In the last four-plus years, I have easily snapped in excess of fifty thousand photos, most of which are still stored on either of two Mac’s and an external hard-drive. Yet, when I encounter one of my pics in my travels, I am going to recognize it every time.
|Any pic-any time|
I have made it abundantly clear to everyone who has ever inquired, “Any pic-any time.” If my photos bring you enjoyment, and you want to print them off, great success. Am I worried that someone will make money on them?
My only interest would be that the photo(s) helped out in some way, shape or form. I have never made a cent off of them myself; hell, I only figured out eight weeks ago how to get physical prints into my own hands. It was a laborious process, for me, technologically, but having now done it, I will be able to sally forth with a new outlook on the big “picture,” so to speak.
I owe it all to Gluten-Free Mama, who bought me a camera for Christmas, four years ago. It was nothing fancy but it opened the sliding glass door, through which the right side of my brain, joyfully cavorted. Up until that point, every camera I ever owned, was used almost exclusively for kid/people pics.
|Who could not see Snoopy?|
Now I went traipsing around the land, taking photos of all the predictable icons: gorgeous sunrises, Blue Rock, stunning sunsets, Chimney Rock, more sunrises, Red Mountain, more epic sunsets, The Yolla Bolly Range, Bell Springs Road, more sun-, Cow Mountain, and mushrooms, don’t forget mushrooms.
Whereas you might think that I would have to travel farther and farther from my home, in order to procure fresh material, nothing could be further from the truth. I find myself, instead, gravitating to places that are literally within a stone’s throw of either my two-blocks-long driveway, or the Bell, for a closer look.
First of all this works well for my getting-on-in-years bulldog, Dozer. He has had breathing difficulties since mid-summer, last year, and so he has to be kept from getting too worked up. When we do our little excursions, we travel over torturously difficult terrain, so we’re not breaking any speed records.
Frankly, I’m just trying to not break anything.
But the Doze gets his exercise, with lots of standing around waiting for me, as I examine every tree, rock, chunk of dead wood, blade of grass, et al, for something of interest. My ongoing goal is to look at nature and see-not which is right in front of my eyes-but what is hidden between the lines.
I want to look at that grotesque chunk of ancient oak, pine, manzanita or madrone, and see what it has been transformed into, over time. The artist who originally created these living entities, has not abandoned them. The brush has continued to stroke, and the canvas has continued to change, like that of Dorian Gray.
No knife will ever restore them to their earlier beauty, however, so they must be content to reflect the beauty of change. It is that allure that I attempt to capture.
|The inexorable march of time|
I have even learned to take the camera out of its San Francisco Giants fanny pack, take the snap, and then return it to safe-keeping, in order to prevent a rerun of the dropping of the brand new camera, on its maiden voyage, into the creek bed.
Though I retrieved it instantly, death was just as quick.
I have upgraded from my little Samsung to a Canon. They are the same size, but the Canon cost close to four hundred dollars, so double the price of the Samsung. Altogether, I went through four of those Sammies, before the climb into the next bracket.
The quality is unquestionably better, and one of these days I will learn how to actually use it, instead of just pointing and shooting. I’m not into complexity-I like to keep things simple. I fear the Law of Diminishing Returns like I fear the tax man.
|Bear or dog? Or both?|
Maybe I would feel that there was justification for the effort to figure out all the knobs and dials, but I doubt it. If left to my own devices, I double-doubt it. Even a tutor working side-by-side, would be challenging because of that pesky inability on my part, to access information when it is presented to me orally.
My game has elevated in my eyes, because the point was never to please others, it was to please myself. My hobby costs nothing over the initial investment, has infinite possibilities, and most importantly, allows me to explore the artistic side of my personality.
I have never taken lessons in either sketching or painting, though I have always thought it would be fun. Now, instead, I have an unlimited canvas, a smattering of tech knowledge, and a right brain that no longer ends up slamming into the sliding glass door.
It has learned to open it first.
|Through the eye of the elder|
|Half giraffe; half poodle|
|Successful mixed marriage|