Following on from my previous post extolling the virtues of ordinary photographs here are a few recent images from some ramblings near where I sometimes reside in Devon, England. Myself and my wife frequently take long walks along parts of the beautiful South Devon Coastal Footpath with its small, inaccessible coves you can look down on and undulating pathways some of which cling precariously to the mainland with the threat of instant death if you take a misstep and fall on the rocks below.
This part of the world is a wonderful place to practice a bit of mindfulness photography. Coincidentally after making my last post I came across The Mindful Photographer by Sophie Howarth, artist, social entrepreneur and co-founder of The School of Life.
Howarth explains that mindful photography is about “prising open the tiny gap between what is happening and how we understand or respond to it”. After all, the very act of making an image demands that we stop and consider what is before us as we frame our composition and maybe try to imagine how what we capture will appear as a 2-dimensional flat image on a page or computer screen.
Howarth organises her book as a series of ‘attitudes’ that we might take or leave when creating photographs. Attitudes are things like curiosity, humility, receptiveness and compassion. Personally I like what she says about the attitude of gratefulness – seeing and appreciating the good in life, no matter how small or insignificant it might be. Gratefulness is about photographing things we find beautiful and intriguing, even ones on our doorstep, which we might normally walk by but which on further reflection are things we might celebrate and savour.
“Taking pictures is savouring life intensely, every hundredth of a second.”Mark Riboud
Here are some of my images to be grateful for.