Connect, Not Collect
As a photographer surrounded by other photographers I notice that we are always hunting to capture something. You will be driving in your car and you see something utterly magnificent and for photographers this magnificence is only worthy if we catch it on film or SD card. We need to capture it in order for us to be happy. Last week I was driving home on a country road and goodness me, all the fog that I had wanted was there...right there...the trees were in full autumn adornment, the light came from one side and it was the most beautiful thing I ever saw. It was also on a road that allows cars to drive at 100 km per hour and it is a very busy road. I knew I could not capture it and part of me was really bummed. After all, what was this if I could not capture it right? I would not be able to share it, I would not be able to have the proof on my camera or have it as a print on my wall....But there it was: magnificence.
I know my photography mania well and can always put a stop to it. I know that if I let the photographer in me take over, she will be in the "collecting" mode. Perhaps you know the feeling? You see a picture and get this feeling that you need to also take that picture. You have not captured that place yet, you have not added this to your stash of photos, a bit like when you were collecting collector's cards or stamps as a child and you needed that stamp or card to complete the collection and then you find out they have come up with a second series and now you need more to complete the collection...
I can watch this part of myself with some amusement nowadays. I'd much rather connect than collect. Connecting is more like mindfully walking in the wonderful places that this earth has to offer and taking in the unmeasurable beauty of it. As an artist, I am always in awe, knowing that no matter how hard I try I will not ever beat nature at creation. If I feel connected I take better pictures, but I am only ever going to the forest, into nature, to connect to it, because I am looking to be enchanted. Some days the enchantment can be captured in a photograph, some days the enchantment happens on a busy main road and I can still capture it, but not with my camera. Sometimes it is enough knowing that some things can't be captured, they can't be collected, but connecting to it brings with it a pure sense of bliss. Magic is allowed to be elusive, it is allowed to not be captured or collected at times, it can however be enjoyed.
Have a blissful week!