The Harvest Moon
Last month Josie and I made a date to photograph the harvest moon. We planned to meet at our Dowco facility and figured the wide expansive valley would be a great place to capture some big moon photos. As we waited for the sun to set we roamed around photographing plants that caught our fancy. Josie and I have set off on these photographic quests many times and I’ve notice that she always sees the tiny miniature beauty that I often unknowingly pass by. In fact she has a macro lens for her camera which enables her to get microscopic with her camera.
Twyla Tharp in her book The Creative Habit explains focal length. She says “All of us find comfort in seeing the world either from a great distance, at arm’s length, or in close-up. “ She talks about observational focal length and describes it as part of an artist’s creative identity. It’s the way they tend to express themselves, and she uses Ansel Adams with his expansive black and whites as and example of how he saw the world from its widest view of land and sky.
We all have certain things we tend to naturally look for and find. While riding in the car with Maurice he has said to me on a number of occasions “Did you see that car?”
Most of the time I reply “No,” because I am looking at nature, the landscape or the buildings we drive by consequently I rarely notice the cars or people driving them. My natural inclination is different than his. Now here’s where I am going with all this. You can stretch your creativity when you change your focus. For example my mother has a way of making unique combinations. She will pull seemingly unrelated items together and somehow make surprisingly wonderful creations. Mom envisions without categorizing and constraining rules producing unique fun results. Like Josie she views the world differently than I and I appreciate her interpretation. While this is not my natural bent, I can stop and purposefully shift my focus to change what I see in the world. How do you see the world? Do you look for the same things over and over? What if today you simply changed your focus and looked at the world differently? Wouldn’t it be fun to be surprised? Let’s try it.
“We want our artists to take the mundane materials of our lives, run it through their imaginations, and surprise us.” Twyla Tharp