Friday, May 16, 2008

beauty high.

On Wednesday I dropped Csilla off at preschool and went for a walk with my camera. It was amazing. Photography is becoming an ever increasing passion of mine. As I learn more technically, I am getting better at capturing the ideas I have in my head on film. (Well, digitally, but you know what I mean.)

For two hours I wandered around the neighbourhood surrounding Csilla's preschool with absolutely no agenda except to observe beauty. All I did was walk and look. I took a step. And looked. Took a step. And observed. I sought out beauty.

It has been a very long time since I enjoyed two hours with such a simple purpose. I consciously searched for things that made my creative heart sing. I searched for colour. Light. Shade. Soft. Hard. Fresh. Worn. Simple. Complex.

And then I took photos of it all.

As you know, I've written just a little bit (hardi har har) about my search for The Happy Girl and my desire to figure out what makes me come alive. Well let me tell you. Give a cheer because as I was walking around observing beauty, I felt completely and totally alive.

I actually felt happy.

Hip hip hooray!

It truly got me excited. I haven't felt exactly like that in a long, long while.

And since this was such a wonderful day for me, I thought I'd share the fruits of my photographic labour. Below is a sampling of the beauty I found on Wednesday. I'm still a novice photographer, but I'm studying and learning and trying to get better.

As far as photography conditions were concerned, the day could not have been more perfect. It had been raining all morning, but immediately after I dropped Csilla off and stepped into the neighbourhood, the rain stopped. It was slightly overcast, but still very bright, which meant that everything was dappled with beautiful rain drops and yet there was no harsh sunlight to cover all the dark spaces in shadows. I couldn't have been more thrilled. I didn't use a tripod and everything was done on auto focus; two facts which surprised my ├╝ber-talented photographer father. I did make a slight vibrancy adjustment in my camera and I'm thrilled with the results. I feel I captured the rich, bright colours I saw on Wednesday perfectly.

After two hours of walking and snapping I was on a beauty high. I loved it.

Today is another gorgeous day and the beauty high hasn't subsided, so I thought I'd share a love list with you to accompany my photos (be sure to click them for a larger view, I think the details are worth a click).

Here, in no particular order, are a bunch of things I am loving right now:

1. Csilla. I seem to be enjoying her so much more lately. She has relaxed the grip on my apron strings ever so slightly and has taken to playing independently for short spurts. It's given me some much needed head space and some new found energy. Not to mention she is SO cute, just like this little friend I encountered on my walk...

2. I'm also loving that Csilla's vitamins smell exactly like the chewable Flintstone vitamins I took as a child. I love it when my scent memory takes me to a happy place; just like this flower, which smelled of fresh rain and wet grass...

3. I love sitting on the patio as Csilla plays happily with a bucket of water and a mixing spoon, while I enjoy the beauty of vibrant green plants like this in my mom's garden...

4. I love warm air. Finally! And wet moss...

5. I love when Csilla says am't instead of am not and neveryday as the opposite of everyday. And, well, this flower doesn't relate to that, but it's gorgeous just like Csilla...

6. I love the adorable new sunhat that Nana bought for Csilla, which is the same colour as these sweet little flowers...

7. I love emails from friends riding buses in New York, which brightens my day just like these flowers...

8. I love doing a simple favour for a very appreciative friend who brought me flowers from her garden to thank me (not tulips, they were camellias, but I didn't take any photos of camellias)...

9. I love supportive blogging friends who encourage my new ideas. Anybody would be green with envy to have friends like mine...

10. I love blogging for myself. And (unrelated) I love the way the colur of this Japanese Maple provides a gorgeous backdrop for this tulip...

11. I love Csilla's plumber's butt. And the crack in this tulip And the deep, rich colour of this tulip which really makes me feel alive...

12. I love birds that chirp so happily it must mean they are as thrilled as I am with the arrival of Spring. Their songs sound as bright as this tulip looks...

13. I love contemplating a trip to Hungary and France this summer. Look at me making plans! I hope they don't wilt...

14. I love tax returns that make #13 possible. And, well, this is not about taxes, but it's just lovely...

15. I love listening to Csilla talk to butterflies in the garden; just like I was talking to this friend when we met...

16. I love Csilla's hair in piggy tails; all wrapped up in cute little bows the colour of these flowers...

17. I love finally not needing to turn on the fireplace in May because the sun is shining and it's actually warm enough outside for these to grow...

18. I love having the time to spend two hours simply observing beauty. Ooops better run. It's ten after one and Csilla's class is finished in twenty minutes...

Wasn't that fun? Thanks for taking a walk with me. And yippee! Look at me... taking pictures and making plans!

And here's where I throw down the gauntlet. I would love to see some photos of things you think are beautiful. Instead of PhotoHunt, I'll call it BeautyHunt! Please post some beautiful things on your blogs and let me know when you do.

Have a wonderful weekend everybody!

13 comments:

softinthehead said...

See you were right in the moment, that's what i meant when I commented on your "What makes you come alive" post. Lovely post and lovely photos - you sound very content :) Have a lovely long weekend.

Jan said...

I can feel the alive in this post. I wanted to be there so badly with you. I just loved every single photo and the verbage to go along with it. I feel you laughing in the sunshine instead of the dark and I really think it is wonderful.

You have some mad skills. And I can feel it is a passion. Give Csilla a hug and amt' kidding.

I will go on a beautyhunt. Because I want to observe beauty like you. The pictures will not be as beautiful, but the time spent will be.. Have a great weekend too.

ped crossing said...

Those were beautiful. Our tulips have come and gone, so I will just have to enjoy yours.

Your two hour beauty hunt sounds so refreshing. One day....

Corey~living and loving said...

This post brought a HUGE smile to my face. You described exactly how I feel about photography. I am alway in my happy place with my camera in hand. :)
You photography is wonderful. You have a lovely eye for it. well done.

menopausaloldbag (MOB) said...

This was one of the most inspirational posts I have read in a long time. Absolutely fabulous pictures of tranquility and beauty. You definitely have a gift for this. Maybe this is your unique selling point - fantastic photo's with witty, thoughtful and inspiring dialogue to spurn the reader into a world they hadn't thought of going to. Really a lovely post to read first thing in the morning as I have just done. Ta Hen as we say in Glasgow!

Aoj & The Lurchers said...

These are just lovely Carolyn! I wish I had more time to get out with my camera so I shall definitely join in your BeautyHunt!

Angella said...

Those shots are BEAUTIFUL, Carolyn!!

You know how happy photography makes me as well. I feel naked without my camera in hand :)

Jen said...

Oh Carolyn. All of your shots are PERFECT!! I need to move by you, so you can teach me all your skills. I LOVE taking pictures, but don't know the first thing about using my camera. f-stops, aperature priority, ISO's, etc etc. I just sit there and play with them all and get frustrated. . . . Anywho, thanks for taking us on a walk with you. It was peaceful and beautiful! :)

aims said...

We don't have any flowers out yet. Of course why would we? This is only our second weekend without snow.

The pics are just beautiful Carolyn. You certainly have an eye for beauty.

Daryl said...

Wonderful snaps .. and wonderful patter.. its amazing how the little things in life, like Csilla, can make you feel so alive .. so good ..

:-Daryl

Kimberly said...

Not only are you passionate about this you're talented as well...strikingly beautiful shots!

You've inspired me, I'm taking the girls outside this afternoon and my camera as well!

Jennifer H said...

You have an eye for photography, my friend. I think you're on to something.

Also...when my son was about a 1 1/2 or so, he was trying to do somersaults, and every time he bent down, his plumber's crack would show...I could hardly get this out when I thought of it, since I was laughing so hard, but I said, "Look, he's doing plumbersaults!!"

Still makes my family laugh.

This whole post was beautiful, both words and photos. Perfection.

Kaycie said...

Gorgeous pictures. And I'm so glad to hear you sounding so happy, Carolyn!