Thursday, December 24, 2015

Sibling Assignment #174: Changes from Behind the Lens

It so happens this is my 3300th post on kellogg bloggin'.

Carol assigned our next Sibling Assignment as a way of looking back at 2015:

Look back over 2015 and write about one of the most memorable things that changed you, and write about the transformation.
Christy wrote about the transformative power of living in Kellogg again, here and you can read about how Carol felt transformed by the Roberts' family staycation/retreat, here.

I love taking pictures.

When the Deke and I moved to Maryland, given how close we live to Washington D. C., I thought I'd mostly take street photographs.  I'd been to D. C. once before, back in 2012, and almost every picture I took was a candid picture of a person or persons I didn't know, but that captured something that grabbed my attention in that moment or that the people I photographed expressed.  Here are a few examples:

As I look back over the pictures I took in 2015, they confirm what I figured to be true:  I didn't take a single "street" shot.

This fact is evidence of a change in how I went about taking pictures in 2015 and is inseparable from a change in how I now experience Washington, D. C. and the surrounding suburbs.

In fact, my idea of where I live has been transformed and so has my photography.

It's all rooted in one simple fact:  where I live is not only alive with urban vitality, but I discovered it is really alive with natural beauty, natural beauty tucked into oases of trees and trails and lakes and creeks and wetlands and rivers surrounded by insanely busy streets, often a riot of sirens and horns and police helicopters.

This memorable discovery of the park lands where I live, repeated itself in many different places, as close to our apartment home as Greenbelt Lake, in National Park operated locations like the National Arboretum and the Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens, in county operated places like Montgomery County's Brookside Gardens and Fairfax County's Huntley Meadows, to name a few.

This past year, I not only discovered beauty close to my new home, but by driving to Cooperstown, N.Y., hiking a small section of the Appalachian Trail in New York, and visiting Cape Cod for an afternoon, I was relieved of my West Coast chauvinism that nothing would ever compare with the beauty of the west.  My awakening to the beauty found in the east has reshaped not only how I think about living here, it's redefined my photography.  Here are a few examples:

Huntley Meadows, VA 

Appalachian Trail, NY

Greenbelt Lake, MD

Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens, D.C. NE

As a post script, I've also had another transforming experience here in Maryland and that is my discovery that I love many of the locally brewed beers, as well as bunch of beers from Virginia, Pennsylvania and New York.

But, if you read this blog even occasionally, you already knew that!

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