Live Wide

In younger days, I tried reading the Roman philosopher Seneca but lacked patience and understanding.  Tonight, a facebook friend posted a link to some of Seneca's writings which left me pondering my photographic life and life in general.   ( http://www.brainpickings.org/2014/09/01/seneca-on-the-shortness-of-life/)

In a way, my creative life has grown along the lines of what Seneca is speaking to; I've balanced toiling with actual living.  Look, we all need to "earn our keep", "pay the rent", "crack the monthly nut", it's a necessity in our world, but at the very least, the toiling needs to be balanced with being present in the moment, valuing our time and appreciating life.  Part of my creative philosophy is to consciously remind myself to be "in the moment".  Yes, being "in the moment" sounds very new-age, but the practice has been around for thousands of years.  And it does take practice.  My highest levels of creativity are reached when I am totally present, or "in the moment", that's when I see things that are largely overlooked or have thoughts and ideas that would otherwise be passed over in busier, more stressful moments.  In the quiet moment, my best work evolves.

This shot of a Biology student collecting samples in a pond was for a University brochure. Being consciously aware of the moment and not merely occupied with photographing the student, I was able to capture something beyond the client's--and my own--expectations.

This shot of a Biology student collecting samples in a pond was for a University brochure. Being consciously aware of the moment and not merely occupied with photographing the student, I was able to capture something beyond the client's--and my own--expectations.

I understand how short our time here can be, but if you live life wide, experiencing life to the fullest and being consciously aware of what's going on around you, the span of time doesn't matter much; there is a big difference between living long and merely existing long.

I'll be honest with you; I'm writing this to remind myself to live and not just exist.  I hope you'll consider doing the same.  The fact that we, as artists--as photographers--have the ability to visually share the results of living a conscious, creative life with the rest of the world is indeed an honor and a privilege.  Let's make the most of it.