Monday, February 11, 2013

Finding My Eye: Letting Go

The Journey of Fascination, the second of Kat Sloma's Find Your Eye classes for this year has started. We had a week off between classes and I can't tell you how much I missed her showing up in my inbox on Sunday and Wednesday. This series is the creative nourishment I need to feed my writing and photographic journey.

Today's exercise was to write about a few mistakes or missed opportunities I have had in my photographic life. We have all made the mistake of not switching the ISO from the last photography adventure or not having the camera on auto focus when you wanted to quick catch a shot. I am notorious for not changing out of the self timer/remote mode. I can't say that these mistakes really bother me. I learn from them and try to do better next time.

Now missed opportunities are a whole different can of worms...

The first happened six years ago when Mallory and I were in Europe on an Educational Tour with some other kids from her school. We were at the American Cemetery in Normandy. We were told we would only have a short hour there before we had to move on to the Caen World War II Museum because they were expecting us for a tour. An hour doesn't even begin to do that place justice. First you just stand there in awe, trying to take in all those white crosses. Finally you gather your wits enough to start taking some pictures. I am happy with what I took, I just felt short changed for what more could have been.


The second missed opportunity was HUGE! I missed seeing my one and only child walk across the stage to receive her high school diploma. I was trying to capture the moment on a totally inadequate for the situation, point and shoot camera. I ended up with a completely blurry photo and no visual memory to cherish. This missed opportunity is hard to let go of. This is my only child. There was only one high school graduation and now I have nothing to remember it by. Lesson learned - sometimes being present in the moment is way more important than the picture.

In order to let this mistake go I may need to follow Kat's advice and write it on a piece of paper and physically burn it to symbolize the process of letting go.



10 comments:

  1. what a lovely shot sounds like you are enjoying these courses

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  2. I so know what you mean we are so keen to record the event that we actually miss the moment..... I'm thinking of taking up Kat's next course in the Autumn I too miss her emails...

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  3. "This series is the creative nourishment I need." Awesome! That is so good to hear! I can feel your pain at missing that moment of your daughter's life. But wait, you didn't miss it, you were there! As you mention, being in the moment, being wholly present, is just as important, maybe more important, as capturing the momentous occasion. I hope this exercise helps you to work through your pain of that missed opportunity. You may have to write it and burn it several times to really let it go... :)

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  4. Hey Sarah, there's always college graduation to look forward to...! I betcha that will be something.

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  5. Your two anecdotes are classic...and make me feel better at least. Again, life's like that, eh?

    xoxo

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  6. I feel your pain! I only have blurring photos of my daughter's graduation. I thought I could use the zoom on a small P&S camera in a dark stadium!! Doesn't work! You were there, and in the end, that's what counts! Great journaling!

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  7. I agree, college graduation will probably be an even bigger deal! And, also agree, even more important you were there sharing the moment. That is a lovely image above of the two of you, maybe you didn't take it, but it documents that you were present for the event.

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  9. Once, on a business trip, I had exactly 45 minutes to spend at the Chicago Art Institute. My one and only opportunity...and it was impossible to see enough! Even though I wasn't trying to take photos, I can understand how you must have felt at that cemetery.

    It's so hard sometimes, being both a participant and a photographer at an event such as your daughter's graduation. But as others have pointed out, you were there and that's what's most important. And that's a lovely picture of the two of you. No one could ever doubt she's yours!

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  10. This is a beautiful post, Sarah. What resonates with me is your discovery that it is more important to be present in the moment than to have that one photo. It is a hard lesson, one I have had to learn, too. But the memories connected to being present are far more precious.

    And I Love your paisley rain boots!

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Thank you so much for visiting today and taking the time to read my thoughts on life. :)