When things get busy…like during this time of the year…I forget to do really important things, like play! But playing is the very thing I need when I am feeling over-the-top with all the demands of work and responsibility and the holidays (I always forget how much cleaning and organizing comes with decorating).
Maybe that’s why we scheduled a field trip in the first week of December (what were we thinking?) to the Children’s Museum. We planned our trip around the idea that play and experience would inspire writing for our students. I brought my camera with me…and I both played with my camera and with my students. I loved the way that play was physical…like climbing these ropes suspended like a web.
On hands and knees I crawled around dark corners in tight spaces until it opened up into a room with hundreds and hundreds of spoons suspended from the ceiling, creating a visual and aural experience. The low light meant the photo images were about play too, as reflected light bounced off the gently swaying metal as my camera attempted to freeze time.
Writing became part of the play as well. “Taking 5” meant time to be inspired and play with words. Our students also found interesting places to perch themselves for this writing, playing with the physical act of writing too. (I played around with Prisma to disguise my student, but still let you see the writing perch he found!)
And when the walls are filled with quotes and images, my mind wants to play with those too. I found myself fascinated with the ways the light was coming in the windows, illuminating bits and pieces. I love that Ask Great Questions is highlighted here…knowing that curiosity is the key to learning.
I was still playing later in the week when I noticed the heavy fluff of the dew-laden dandelions in the front yard. I can only imagine what the neighbors were thinking when they saw me kneeling in the wet grass as I headed out for work trying to capture that heaviness. I decided to pull this iPhone image in close and make it black and white to emphasize the beauty of the simplicity.
I feel like the moon has been playing chase and tag with me all week. I’ve been noticing the waxing moon in the late afternoon all week. After I got my phone repaired this week (I had one of those defective 6s batteries!), I noticed the moon working hard to be a decoration on the local mall Christmas tree and I played with angles using my newly repaired phone to capture the moment.
And in spite of that heaviness of exhaustion, after school yesterday I made a spur of the moment decision to find the street entrance of a beach I have only previously seen from the sand level. I was not disappointed–in fact, I felt energized. The tide was getting high and as I walked over mounds of rocks I looked back at the cliffs and noticed the moon following me in a playful game of follow the leader–with me leading this time!
So, let’s focus on play this week. How will you capture play in your photos…or play with your images? How will you push pass the demands of each day and discover moments for playfulness in your busy routine?
You can post your photo alone or along with some words: commentary, a story, a poem…maybe even a song! I love to study the photographs that others’ take and think about how I can use a technique, an angle, or their inspiration to try something new in my own photography. (I love a great mentor text…or mentor photo, in this case!) I share my photography and writing on social media. You can find me on Instagram and Twitter using @kd0602. If you share your photos and writing on social media too, please let me know so I can follow and see what you are doing. To help our Weekly Photo community find each other, use the hashtag #play for this week and include @nwpianthology in your post.
Get out and play around! Be sure to share your play with the rest of us!