Thich Nhat Hanh said:
The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it.
This week, I have tried getting up earlier. To be able to create pockets of time in my day, to do the things I love before I go to work. Not a new year’s resolution, just something I am trying. It has paid off.
The sun peeked through the thorn tree on the edge of the patio, creating mottled shadows on the tiles, It was mostly quiet outside. The occasional squawk of a bird and the sound of dogs barking in the distance broke into the quietness. The fridge hummed in the background. As I settled down at the dining room table, the shadows immediately caught my eye.
The low sun streaming through the large glass doors was blocked by the table and chairs. They cast long shadows over the shiny laminate floor – like monsters with ungainly, gangling limbs.
Ten minutes later, they have all but faded. If I’d come through then, I would have missed them completely.
Light is fleeting and to catch it, one must always be aware
My daily photography habit nurtured over many years of doing personal 365 projects, and my search for everyday delights has helped me to grow this awareness, slowly and steadily.
My new home has lots of light, and at this time of year (summer), it is strong directional light. It moves around the house at different times of the day and is fabulous – if you look out for it. The house also has an amazing collection of chairs, which I have discovered make superb shadows.
I decided to do a shadow theme for my photographs this month and its a testament to my expanding ability to see beyond what is there. It is a good “awareness” challenge too because as I take my shots or move the chairs to set up a shot, I am aware of the direction of the light, the warmth of the sun on my legs and arms and the brightness if I look into it. Often, my cats will be right there, in the sun, enjoying it as it moves around the house.
Prince of the shadows © Deborah Ann Stott 2018
Thanks to my photo project, I’m so much more aware of light and shadow and daily changes in the direction and warmth of light than I used to be.
Now I look beyond the obvious and into the spaces to find my photograph opportunities. If I am attentive, I will find them.
End January update: See more of the images from this month here.
Until next time, I hope you find moments of joy and happiness!
Other posts in this series: