One of the things that struck me when I took up photography was how blind I have been to so much of the world around me.
Not blind in the sense of lacking sight, but blind to the subtleties that exist in every object– be it a sunset, a flower, a building facade, even a shadow.
We have all grown used to our brains processing everything in a hurry. We see what we need to see, what we want to see, and what we have time to see. And that means we miss out on much of what’s actually there.
Photography is forcing my eyes to take in more– more detail, more clarity, more context– and more color.
When I was a kid and wasn’t in such a hurry, I saw colors in everything. When I gazed up at the sky I could see that it wasn’t just one shade of blue. A cloud wasn’t merely white. There were purples and oranges and pinks… my mind’s palette was huge and the world was dazzlingly, gloriously alive.
As I grew up I focused on other things– things that took up time and emotional energy. Life blurred and greyed and dribbed and drabbed. It wasn’t that I couldn’t see color anymore, just that I forgot I had the ability to see beyond the broadest strokes of the brush.
Thankfully, the camera is training my eyes to see again. I am beginning to be able to discern once more the broad strokes, the subtle strokes, and the possibilities hidden beyond immediate sight.
I am allowing the colors back in, and the world is new again.