Macro to More


“To me, photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place…I’ve found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.”

~ Elliott Erwitt~

While I was deciding on what to post today, I did a random search for macro photography quotes. As I scrolled through some various quotes, one stuck with me. The quote above from Elliott Erwitt is my photography mantra basically. When I am walking around, I see pictures. I literally have to force myself to keep moving at times or I will stop and stare at things, and if my camera is around, take 5 or 100 photos.

I think about the perspectives and watch the light. I look closely to see the wonder that a passerby may miss in their frantic pace of life. Of course, I can’t do this all the time. I do have a job to do and bills to pay. But, even in the midst of day-to-day life, I notice the world and think, “That would make a great picture.”

Anyway, as I thought about Erwitt’s quote, I realized,  I honestly had no idea who the man was. So I did some internet research. Hhhmmmm. This is the photographer who shot the famous Marilyn Monroe subway vent shots!

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According to Wikipedia, “Erwitt is an advertising and documentary photographer known for his black and white candid shots of ironic and absurd situations within everyday settings.” He also served two years in the Army as a photographer’s assistant.

There is a lot more to say about the man of course, but I hate to repeat what others have already stated to so well. So check out some of these links if you want to know more:

Fellow WordPress blogger – BWGallerist

Dirk De Graaf on Pintrest

Wikipedia

American Photo Magazine

Overall, a very interesting mini research project on some history in the world of photography. I would have to say, I never thought this is where my thoughts would go for my macro post on some flowers from my yard.

I suppose that is what is fun about opening our eyes to world. For when we look a little deeper at things, we not only discover beauty, but we sometimes find mystery, wonder, inspiration, details and history that just could effect us in some way. Maybe we will learn something, shift our perspective or find some solace. Regardless, the closer we look at things, the more we really see them.

Where will your camera take you? And what will you find if you look a little deeper?

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For Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge ~ Macro.

Storytelling Leaves


Days shorten, we fall away Drifting Floating We cannot stay Colors change and intensify Deepening Altering We mystify It’s not death, only rebirth Transforming Converting Parts of the Earth So stop and look, at our glory Creating Inspiring Many a … Continue reading

The Value of Character


As I have grown, I have realized the importance of character. Some people have it. Others do not. Frankly, I prefer those who do and avoid those who don’t.

Character is hard to explain exactly though. According to one dictionary site, character is the mental and moral qualities distinctive to an individual. In Greek, a kharaktēr was a stamping tool, used to give something a distinctive mark. To me, character is what defines a person, what makes them unique and most importantly, what guides their actions.

Martin Luther King once said he looked forward to the day when all Americans would be judged solely “by the content of their character,” he was talking about a person’s important qualities. For if you rate people solely on their beauty, job title or wealth, you may find that they are not really people you want to be around. They may not have the same values you do. They may not act with a similar moral compass.

Throughout life, I have found character is critical. The people who have it seem to succeed. Those who don’t, eventually fail. Sometimes it takes awhile for someone’s true character to show, but it usually does. A military leader, General Lucian K. Truscott explained it well. “Character as we used to say when I was in elementary school, is what you are. Reputation is what others think you are. The reason that some fail to climb the ladder of success, or of leadership if you want to call it that, is that there is no difference between reputation and character. The two do not always coincide. A man may be considered to have sterling character. Opportunity might come to that man; but if he has the reputation for something he is not, he may fail that opportunity. I think character is the foundation of successful leadership.”

So what does all of this have to do with my pictures below? Well, when deciding what to write about the iPhone macro shots, I searched the symbolism on lilies. I came upon one site that stated lilies meant: “honor, majesty, purity of heart, sympathy and pure soul resurrection.”  And that their symbolism was to remind us that “our good deeds do not need to be seen by a lot of people and we do not need to tell everyone about them.”

To me, that all said character. Now, when I look at the details of the lily, I have more meaning, more value. I see the majesty of the petals’ bold colors as the beauty in someone’s life. It changes as we grow, fading from one phase (color) to the next. The flower’s core, where the petals meet, are the purity of one’s heart. For the intention of people’s actions come from their heart. All things start from there as in this lily. The stamens are like the good deeds to me. You don’t need to point them out. They will be noticed by others without one boastful word. The speckled dots of color on the petals look like tears to me. Tears of sympathy and pain we all surely have through life. But the thing is, as we learn with age, some of our pain fades (hopefully the sympathy doesn’t). Like on the petals, the dots of pain (color) fade and almost blend into one color it seems. It’s not that we don’t feel pain later in life, we have just simply learned betters ways to cope and understand it. And with faith, we are new people, resurrected to know the pain of this life is only temporary. So we can endure.

My lilies seem to endure quite well. They are hearty and thrive in nearly all conditions, and I guess its because they have character. I think I will always look at them differently now.

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For Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge.

Glory of Rain


I find nature to be utterly amazing with its endless variations and countless wonders. Large and small creations in the world create nearly the same level of wonder for me. I can appreciate a magnificent canyon as well as a drop of rain on a leaf. To me, they both hold beauty, meaning and value.

Like most things in life though, each piece of nature can be interpreted and viewed in multiple ways. For some, rain can be looked at in a negative light. It can ruin planned events like a cookout, wedding or beach day. To others, it can hold an entirely different and positive view. For example, rain can be a farmer’s answer to prayers on a drought or a Native American’s symbolic meaning for renewal, fertility or change. So like most things, beauty (and value) is in the eye of the beholder.

Generally, rain is a good thing for me. Of course I don’t want it to rain every day. I love the sunshine just as much as anyone else. However, I can respect the rain and what it brings. I can appreciate its power and elegance.

Take a look at these simple iPhone pictures that I shot while wandering through the woods on my horse. They are tiny little wonders that caught my eye and required me to dismount. Once stopped, I crouched down staring at the details, the way the light reflected off the raindrops. I loved the way the raindrops placed themselves around the bud and leaves. (Which shot of the bud and leaves do you prefer and why?) These views made me think about life and change – more of the Native American view I suppose.

I think of rain as necessary, even magical. It cleanses away the dirt and pollen. It nourishes plants, animals and humans. It creates stunning landmarks. It holds an elegant grace while at times, a fierce power. There is something about water itself that I am drawn to. I find that I am quite mesmerized by rain. When my kids were younger, I remember a day where we started running around in a fairly heavy, but warm rain. We acted silly and laughed until tears as we shampooed our hair outside in our driveway. Once when I was dating, I recall a romantic slow dance out in a gentle rain. Even last night, I stood on my deck watching the heavy rain fall. It was a sense of awe to watch the wind and rain whip things around. Even though that combination made two decent-sized trees fall at my house, my sense of wonder did not diminish. If anything, it raised my level of fascination. It only reinforced my belief that nature is something that must be respected for its splendor as well as its authority. We cannot control nature. We can merely study it and prepare for it.

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For this week’s nature theme on Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge. If you are not familiar with the challenge, make sure you click here to check out Sally’s post today. Every week there is a different theme to play with.