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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Dailies


Dedicate yourself to a regimented program and gifts may just seem to come your way

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And having my iPhone with me every day, everywhere I went, I definitely took more pictures! Long ago I realized how little I really shot when I used only my "big boy" cameras. I had upped the number of shot photos by a factor of 10 when I began to carry small pocket cameras with me. With the iPhone, it went up by another factor of 10. Turns out my "big boy" cameras were seldom with me, my pocket cameras were often with me, my iPhone was always with me.

Great—taking more photos than ever, visual acumen rising like a rocket. But something else began to happen that was far more interesting and a little hard to talk about.

Things began to ask to have their picture taken.

I know that's weird, but let me try to explain. When I "make" a photo, it's my intellect that's in control. I'm way too full of myself to actually listen to the landscape. Even when I "take" a photo, my left brain is talking loud enough that, while I'm definitely aware of the landscape, I'm still not really hearing it. But when I wait and listen for something to be "given" to me—not always, but sometimes—some very strange things happen.

Last week, I pulled in my driveway after a long day of teaching. I'd had more than enough photography for that day. I was looking forward to just letting my eyes rest and perhaps a quiet cocktail on the porch. As I stepped from the car, I actually heard a voice. "Over here," it said. I looked up and saw backlit hibiscus at the other end of the drive. I found myself thinking, perhaps even murmuring, "No, don't even think about it. I've had enough for today."

I thought, "I'm not really hearing voices. As a photographer, I see the light, I know there might be a good photo down there. It's just my mind telling me this. I don't have to go."

The voice became more insistent: "Get down here."

Okay. I walked to the end of the driveway and raised my iPhone up to what was a perfect composition. No work, no effort. It was just there, a gift given. A gift received.

Voices, intuition, dumb luck, talking plants? As I sat on my porch and looked at the image, I thought, "You know, I really don't care. I don't have to know. Something is happening and I'm having too much fun following it. I'll just try and show up every day with all my receptors open. No brakes. No judgments. I don't want to miss any of the gifts."

Dewitt Jones posts daily photographic images on his Facebook page, www.facebook.com/dewittjonesfanpage. Check out his new Celebration website at www.celebratewhatsright.com.

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