Monday, October 10, 2011

A Style of Mind

I'm normally a pretty focussed person when it comes to my creative goals. But with a couple of weeks of a crumby cold, still getting used to this new job (it's only really been a few months), and other various small interruptions, I just can't seem to get it together lately.  Last week I was asked to submit my work to Getty Images via Flickr.  Probably a lot of people were sent the same email.  However, it was some small bit of validation for this crazy photography obsession.  How did it even come about?  Honestly, I've never had any plan for my photos.  I take them because it makes me happy.  I don't even have a simple plan like - "take a photo every day."  Mostly I do, but that's not part of any plan.  Some days I take a dozen that I like, and then I go for days without taking anything. Mostly I just let it happen.

I'm not like that with my writing.  I'm always making lists of things I want to write about, how I want to write about them.  Then I constantly revise the list.  I make myself imaginary deadlines.  If I don't meet them, I become irritable.

And then there's the blog. Recently I've been adding it to my list.  You know, find a way to make this blog into a book.  Wait, you say, you already have a book named Calm Things.  Yes. Yes, I do.  But maybe this book would be bigger, longer, fuller.  And be more about Calm in general.  Well, just me toying with ideas.  But I think that's mostly why I'm fiddling so much with this blog.  I come here because I'm seeking something poetic, beautiful, calm.  They all go together for me.

"Over against the world with all its turbulence, distraction and worry, one should cultivate a style of mind that can reach through to an inner stillness and calm.  The world cannot ruffle the dignity of a soul that dwells in its own tranquility.  Gradually, this serenity will begin to pervade our seeing and change the way we look at things."  

~ John O'Donohue, Beauty

I guess what I'm trying to do for myself anyway, in these posts, often, very often random, and unconnected, is to cultivate a style of mind.

And all the photographs?  I guess it's a way for me to scrutinize the world, the dailiness of an existence.  To notice.  It's a way of focussing, quite literally.  Even if a book never comes about, and it would be so far off anyway, because I have two other books I'm currently writing on my list, I can't think that it's a waste, to go ahead cultivating that state of mind.  The mind of tranquility, serenity, calm.  To see through that lens.

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