A couple weeks ago, as I went about living my life, I was taking photos like I usually do when I saw something so crazy cool through the lens of my camera.
I was outside in the front yard while the girls were riding bikes and I decided to lay down in the grass. I don't usually lay in the grass in the front yard but the cats were out there too and Sam was being especially playful. I had my phone with me because I had taken a photo of Aaron working on Audrey's bike and as I was laying in the grass looking up at the sky I turned over to take a shot of one of the cats in the grass and I saw a completely different view of my house than I ever had before - looking up at it from the ground. Most of the times the photos I've taken of the front of my house have been from the street - looking at it straight on.
This was one of those ah-ha moments for me about seeing things "fresh" with the same eyes. And all it took was putting my body in a different position and aiming my lens.
It was like getting an unexpected gift from a dear friend and it was such a good reminder that we can choose to see the same old, same old stuff of our lives through fresh eyes by simply changing our perspective.
Overall I feel like I am taking less photos than I used to (at least I think this is true - no scientific data to back up that claim) but I definitely still take them and I take them with what often feels like intention. That intention is often to support a story I would like to tell at some point - to capture a feeling, to capture a little story about myself or one of the awesome people that share this house with me, to remember a moment in time, to document a chapter. I'm pretty sure I will always love seeing life through the lens of my cameras but, as with most things in life, there is an ebb and a flow to interest, motivation, etc and I'm totally fine with that.
With the a-ha moment of new perspectives in my same house in mind, the next morning I walked into Anna's room where she was sitting at her table (table and outline stools from Land Of Nod - those stools are on super sale) watching YouTube videos before school and learning how to draw some characters. I started off by taking a shot like I would normally do - generally standing in the doorway at my regular height and looking down on the scene.
Things I like about this photo:
- I like that it shows the stuff of life - the way the girls are interacting in their room, the baskets, the drawings, the clothes on the floor, how she's sitting on her stool, etc.
Things I don't like about this photo:
- One of the main reaons I wanted to capture this story was because Anna was using the iPad to learn to draw. In this angle you can't even see that she's looking at an iPad.
To mix things up for a new perspective - and to capture more of the story I wanted to tell on this occasion - I got closer to Anna and I crouched down on the ground to be closer to the level of the table and took a shot straight-on.
When I looked at this shot through my camera lens (just my iPhone) I was blown away by the windows. Just getting down to this level and shooting straight on gave a totally different look and feel to the moment.
I love that I can still see the stuff of life (you can't see as much stuff on the floor but that's not what this story was really about) and as a viewer you can see that she's looking on the iPad. I also love how she's holding her hand.
Finally, to tell an even more complete story through the lens of my camera I tried one more perspective - a "looking down" angle that showed what she was actually drawing on her table. I love how her artwork is framed by the pens at the top, the iPad to the right, and her body along the bottom and left corner/edge.
So loved this reminder to myself to look for new perspectives on some of the same stories I've been telling for awhile.
Nothing has changed except me seeing my current environment from a new perspective. And that might just have the power to change everything.