Adding thoughts to my Find Your Eye class considering inspiration and where it evolves from. My task was to choose a familiar subject or locale, take a bunch of photos, give them careful review and reflect on the results.
There are times I wish my mind would process faster, but....it doesn't, especially with creativity. When I was teaching I was "given" about a 1/2 hour a day for lesson planning. On Tuesday mornings between 9:05-9:30 I was slated to be creative and Wednesday from 12:30-1:00, etc. If I needed to use the restroom or ready my classroom with supplies like pencils, tambourines, books, drums, etc...I had to steal from that time. Needless to say, creative juices normally did not flow in those 15 remaining minutes. I've since learned that creativity comes at its own pace in its own way, but I do wish it would hurry along sometimes.
It took me a few days to come up with a place that I considered inspirational, but I finally thought of one....Dannah's.
I can't really say what Dannah sells-she has lots of different things; scarves, jewelery, fancy reading glasses, pins, soaps, cards, sachets, decor, and a bunch of other stuff. A perfect place to shop for a thank you or hostess gift. Dannah embodies an artist's whimsy. It takes me forever to find something in her shop-it's stuffed full, and items are artfully displayed in what seems no particular order...but she knows where everything is.
Outside of her shop it always looks beautiful...I knew I'd find inspiration there. I'm moved to take photos every time I pass by her store. It was the ideal spot to visit.
I liked shooting on the sidewalk in front of her storefront. I was able to ignore tourists across the street waiting for dinner reservations and the periodic passerby. In general I'm trying to slow down when I shoot photos and so often when I do, I see so much more. I'm trying to stop searching for the next best thing-and instead work in and focus on the space I'm in. This was a great place to practice that.
This shot with the exclusive River Club docks in the backdrop pleases me. The punch of color, the raindrops, the late day light on the water....all works. I did take this with several different focus points but the shallow DOF was my favorite. For a long time I've been aware that I like this type of focus with a drop off to one side into a blurred backdrop. Again I'm drawn to this type of image.
Sometimes it almost feels like "cheating" when I take flower photos. I'm not a huge flower fan-I don't like gardening and don't have a big interest in learning a gazillion flower names, but I like their colors, patterns and shapes. It feels like cheating because they're so beautiful and colorful-you're almost guaranteed a winning shot. (I'm only speaking of my own flower shots-I admire the work of others and don't feel they cheated at all....this is my own hangup.)
I think this may be my favorite shot of the evening. Honestly, I didn't even see this urn-walked right past it, more than once, until I slowed down. When I physically sat on the sidewalk, all of a sudden there it was. I took shots from 3 sides, but this image was my favorite. I like the texture on the urn and tried to bring it out some in post-processing. And...there are those beautiful flowers again, making me look good...thank you mini petunias or whatever you purple lovelies are.
I was processing this the other day when my mother peeked over my shoulder and said "WHAT is THAT?" I guess she wasn't loving the image.
I played quite a bit with these globe shaped lanterns-they were each unique and offered a whimsical spirit to the displays. I tried some of out focus shots, some straight on, but again chose this with the shallow DOF. It's okay, I'm owning it.
For several months now I've been drawn to reflections, based on a chance meeting with James from Weekend Reflections. I also noticed in my inspiration file a number of window photos. I wasn't aware that I like windows in images and photographed them so frequently.
I wonder why....what am I trying to see? Is it a way I'm turning away from my diet of clean lines to things more abstract? Not sure. I do know a window shot often offers so much more than the obvious and has many layers-kind of like a Mozart Sonata-with each listen, you hear something you missed before-and windows images often have more in them than you realize you're capturing.
I did not become bored or frustrated while shooting pics. I didn't pay attention to the time, only to the fading light. I only stopped when a kind woman from Rhode Island engaged me in chit-chat while she munched her butter pecan ice cream. I think I was about ready to stop shooting anyway.
I didn't shop inside at all. No one came out and told me to "shoo" so I guess it's all good. I'll give a shout out to Dannah and her lovely shop at 123 Ocean Avenue in case you're visiting Kennebunkport.
Also a shout to Kat for helping me think about the root of my inspiration.