Sunday, May 13, 2012

Well Built | Adventure Photographer

This weekend I held my last Evolution Photography Workshop and as much as I love to pass on knowledge, I am glad it's done for a while. The workshop has evolved into a serious base for creativity and confidence with off camera flash but it is very exhausting.

A hay wagon from 80 years ago lives out its days in the Boneyard.
One of the locations we went to on Saturday was the "Boneyard", a personal favourite of mine that is owned by a family I know who are farmers and take all their old equipment there to die. I love this place, there is so much old steel here and when I see it I am amazed at the quality and engineering from some of the implements that were in production 70-80 years ago. There are thin metal tubes, gears and wheels that are weathered but not even showing signs of rusting rot. I have seen car bodies from 20 years ago that are nearly all gone and not near the condition of the steel in these old swathers and seeders resting for years in the tall grass. I can't help but think there was a time in North America when industrial equipment was thoughtfully engineered to last and to be repaired. That now we have become such a disposable society and the devices we rely on and use to entertain us are built to last only a few years (if that).

I would have loved living 70 years ago. Working hard, physical labour and a dramatically more simpler life. I want this now actually and as much as convenience rules the day in my life, I am going to make a concious effort when I can to purchase or use items that have long-lasting value. And to take the time to slow down time, to breath deeply and watch the sunlight stream through the grass. To open my eyes and take a mental picture of the beauty that is all around us, to dive deeper into the occasional moment.

Maria Coffey talks about an aspect of writing that helps her to make even the most obscure subject interesting. She explained how "exploding" detail about a particular idea or scene, or greatly expanding and going deeper within it can give the reader a point of view that they would ordinarily pass over. This is something I want to experience at least once every day.

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