Failure to see the obvious and exploit the art in a moment is a problem that plagues even the most seasoned photographer. All too often, I think... "there's nothing to shoot... I've seen it all... it's been done before."
This morning I awoke to a surprisingly sunny dawn, grabbed the gear, and headed for the local nature center. It's late May, and I expected the spring lupine to be in full bloom. Heavy evening rains and the crisp night would make for an amazing shoot. Giant drops of water will cling to delicate purple flowers backlit by the rays of sunrise. Sadly, an inclement spring coupled with aggressive praire management has delayed my lupine... "nothing to shoot... I've seen it all... it's been done before."
The mantra repeats in my head and negativity now suffocates the inner artist that seeks to escape the empiricist that defines my daily life. In science we explore the natural world with our predefined questions, formulate hypotheses, and rely on discrete units of data to draw our conclusions. On this day, there are no lupine and thus there is nothing to photograph. It is this exercise in logic that often restricts my vision. Yet, my inner artist refuses to be defined by the empiricist. He is my imp, my random friend who whispers... "the world is complex... slow it down... you've never been in this here and this now."
Listen to the voices that speak to you. The logician is the foil to the dreamer and the dreamer helps the logician to see. These opposing forces are the source of your vision. In my mind, my optimist allows me to live in the moment while my realist helps me translate the dream into reality. The tension between these opposing forces helps to define my vision. It facilitates my process, and exposes me to the art present at any given moment in time.