Friday, February 21, 2014

Day 200 of 365: Getting Back to Passion

For a very brief moment, there was sun yesterday. As part of my morning ritual, I trudged out through the snow to feed the chickens (a path that I've given up shoveling and now just stomp through in hopes that my feet eventually carve out a path). I couldn't help but notice how beautiful the sun was early in the morning. I wasted no time getting back inside, grabbing my headphones and my camera, and going out to do a little photography.

While the sun eventually disappeared as the morning went on, but not before I got a few cool shots in. I played around with the shutter speed, the aperture, seeing what happened when I increased one, decreased another, brought both down and up... The clouds came in and I found myself back to my wintertime-anti-productive self, dragging ass just to get the most measly homework assignment or house chore done. It was so bad that I actually patted myself on the back for sending one email out to a magazine with a copy-n-paste pitch query.

But, still, that feeling I got while snapping photos, crouching down, getting into awkward angles, reviewing photos with a smile or a scowl...I forgot how good that felt. It's easy to get caught up in life, easy to fuss over the pragmatic aspects or worry over the weather and forget the little things that drive you forward.

I remember walking around Boston for hours on end, my iPod practically drained of all its life as I took pictures of street signs and the Charles River and whatever else passed my fancy. When I moved up to New Hampshire, I wandered the nature trails with the exact same mindset. My camera is by my side on every vacation, even if ends up being way too bulky for my own good.

And that moment, when you get the angle just right, and the lighting is downright perfect, and you can't help but get a visceral reaction to what you see? And knowing that you are the one who made that angle, you are the one who manipulated the light? There are few feelings like it. It makes shelling out hundreds of dollars for a DSLR and proper lenses worthwhile, even as the rest of the world gives up their point-n-shoots to snap photos from their phones.

It's been tough, trying to combat the ever-ubiquitous Seasonal Affective Disorder (or, as I call it, the "We're supposed to hibernate this time of year," syndrome), but a brief reminder of one of my passions is just what the doctor ordered.

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