Wednesday, November 2, 2011

A thousand words

I took a photography class in college. Not because I was particularly interested in photography, but because it was required for my journalism major. It was taught by my friend and fellow co-ed dorm resident, Paul (he of the ambiguous sexual orientation)(misplaced crushes were a hallmark of my college years) and it was a fun class.

My favorite part by far was the darkroom. This was back before digital photography, and the cameras we used for the class were ancient boxy things that required large-format rolls of film. I loved the dim red lights, the smell of the chemicals, the miracle of developing film, the meditative action of making prints. I am a lab rat by nature and probably could have been some sort of scientist if not for all the math.

My least favorite part, by WAY far, was taking the actual photos. I just didn't have the eye. In theory I understood the rule of thirds and the way a photo was SUPPOSED to be composed, but my eyes just didn't see that way. I had no awareness of light and shadow, no appreciation for texture, no concept of contrast, no patience for framing a shot. I just didn't get it.

I still don't. Heh.

This is probably why I find myself slightly obsessed with photo blogs. Those who can't do, teach? Um, no. Those who can't do stand in awe of those who can, at least in my case. My favorite photo blog of the moment is habit -- it absolutely takes my breath away on a daily basis the way words and images can combine to create mystery, tension, comfort and jubilation. I was thrilled to learn that the folks at habit have opened up the blog for the month of November -- anyone and everyone is invited to post photos and words in the habit flickr pool this month. Some of those words and photos will be published on the habit blog, but even the ones that don't get chosen are just amazing and inspiring and well worth a look.

So, in addition to doing NaBloPoMo, my meager photography skillz and I have jumped in with both feet and are participating in the habit flickr pool this month! I doubt any of my photos will be chosen to appear on the blog, but I'm hoping it will goose my creativity just a bit. The more amazing images I see from other people's lives, the more inspired I am to REALLY see and to capture images from my own. I'm trying to get "the eye". I haven't given up!

See you over there?


  1. I know, habit is pretty beautiful. Good for you for jumping in with both feet. Don't give up!!