Every now and then, something will catch your eye and you notice that it is slightly spectacular in some small, special way. And you look a little closer, to hang onto that rush of joy for a minute longer. Sometimes, if you’re feeling especially excited and inspired, you’ll dig your camera out of the bag in the corner and take a picture. And then a few more. Because once you start, it’s hard to stop noticing all of the different ways to capture its essence.
Upon typing the word “essence,” I decided to look it up in the dictionary. I know what the word means, but sometimes the dictionary has a funny way of reminding us what the word actually means, tearing it away from the definitions that we often attach by naive association.
the intrinsic nature or indispensable quality of something
I found that to be a lovely description of the word. Intrinsic means “belonging naturally” and indispensable means “absolutely necessary.” In a nutshell, an essence is the absolutely necessary, natural qualities about something, the qualities that give it its identity and purpose for being.
In this case, my attention was captured by a little green plant in a black plastic planter, sitting on the windowsill in the kitchen, basking in the late afternoon sun. It was practically begging me to take its picture.
So I did. And it was refreshing. Refreshing to capture little things and enjoy the colors, the shapes, the light patterns. As I wrote about here, it’s a part of holding onto tiny moments that make up memories of seasons of life or times of day.
The sound of dishes being washed in the sink and cars driving by the house. The sound of leaves rustling in the wind through open windows and metal screens. Screens that more often than not have holes in the wire. The pictures themselves don’t hold the sound, but for now, they store the memory and emotions of that moment. Even if the only thing worth remembering was the relief that the work day was over and the sun was shining.
And there he was, a little plant, peeping up above the edge of his container as if to say, “Hey! Look at me! I made it through the day too. And I’m just here to wait until the next one begins. Did you notice that it’s sunny outside?”
Yes, I have a habit of making inanimate objects talk as if they have voices (and as long as I don’t hold a conversation, sanity remains intact).
Setting out to capture this little guy in as many ways as possible, I discovered that there were only so many ways to take the picture. But it was a fun challenge for a Monday evening and a nice reminder to delight in little things.
Things like little green plants with dark coral leaf tips remind me that this is what I love, but I don’t do it enough. I push it to the back of my mind and convince myself that it’s not worth checking memory cards and batteries and organizing lenses for 30 minutes of freedom behind the camera.
(Pssst – Anyone who ever wants to be a model, make yourself known, I promise it’ll be fun! And if it’s not, then ice cream is in your future. Or maybe I should offer ice cream either way?)
There ya go. That’s all I have. An explosion of recent thoughts on photography and little green plants. Shall we call it a Wednesday Window? A window into my thoughts and this art form.