Tag Archives: curiosity

Weekly Photo Challenge: In a Line

Sometimes things line up.  I’ve been to this airport hundreds of times…and a bunch just in the last few weeks, but this view stopped me in my tracks.  I love the lines of the plexiglass window, the horizon reflected from behind, the palm trees along the right side, and the traffic snaking along below.  I took this photo with my phone…and I just love everything about it!

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I was surprised to find these mailboxes on a walk not far from my son’s suburban home.  I think of mailboxes like this as something I would find on a rural lane.  I love they way they are all in a line, there is something about the differences in color and degrees of rustiness that add to their character.  (Along with that branch on the end!)

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This nearby canal runs alongside a line of hiking/biking/running trails.  We took our grandsons out in the stroller to walk along them and Geoff did some running to keep up his training for the Rock and Roll half marathon tomorrow.  I love following the line of the canal with your eye and seeing the mountains in the distance.

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These drying flowers also seem to hang in a line, remnants from the profusion of spring wildflowers.

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Back at home brought me back to the beach.  Along the cliffs there were stacks and stacks of rocks, all in a line.  I wonder if they are stacked by the same person(s) or if people see them and add to the piles.  I saw them a few weeks ago, and there are even more in the same spot now.  It’s hard to get a photo that shows the number of stacks.

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As I drove to my other son’s house last night, I watched the sunset as I followed the line of freeway that stretches its way from one end of our state to another.  The huge orange ball slowly sunk, making the taillights of the cars ahead even more prominent.

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I spent the day today with my other grandson while his parents prepared to celebrate my daughter-in-law’s completion of her pediatric residency at a dinner with all the other residents.  I’m loving these grandma moments, getting to watch child development from a new perspective.  As I watched him run from one end of the backyard to the other, touching the grass,, crinkling dry leaves in his fingers, poking his finger in the sprinkler heads I was reminded of the power of exploration and curiosity.  How lucky I am to look at the world again through the eyes of my three young grandsons!

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So, what’s lining up in your world this week?  Take a look around and captures those lines in a photo or few.

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 #inaline for this week and include @nwpianthology in your post.

Be on the look out for those things that are in a line…or create some lines of your own.  Be sure to share with the rest of us!

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Curiosity

Do you speak in images? Enjoy taking photos to document your experiences or just to express what you notice in the world? Love to share them with others? Welcome to the weekly photo challenge! I post a new challenge each week…check in regularly and join the fun!

When I am out with my camera, I notice things in the world that I somehow overlook as I go about my daily business…and I find myself asking questions and wondering about so many things.  I think my neighbors must think I am crazy when they see me out in the middle of my lawn as I head out to work, crouched low with my phone in hand, trying to photograph the strange little gray mushroom that somehow cropped up overnight.  Where did it come from? Why is it gone before I get home in the afternoon?

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The macro lens constantly piques my curiosity.  It’s amazing when you are able to bring what’s ordinarily too small to notice to full scale.  I love the layers of stacked petals on this mum.  I can see why Georgia O’Keeffe painted so many big pictures of flowers!

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I didn’t have my macro handy for this shot…and I doubt the butterfly would have stood still enough for me to get close anyway.  I was curious when I saw this monarch in Raleigh…just like I do at home in San Diego.  What is the ideal habitat for monarchs?  Is it about temperature? Available food sources?  Are they native to both places?

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I’m also curious about learning and how to best support it.  We like to have our students sketch, especially when looking closely at something real.  This is a sketch of an aspen leaf (not commonly found in our area).  I like the way this student paid careful attention to detail, both in the contour shape and in the placement of the veins that run through it.

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And what is it about bubbles that draw our attention and make us smile?  We use bubbles in the classroom as a way to celebrate birthdays…the birthday child gets to pop bubbles we blow as the kids sing.  It always brings a sense of joy and a big smile–to the birthday child and to the rest of us too!  Is it the translucent hint of color or the temporary nature of these fragile balls that delight us?

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What has piqued your curiosity lately?  Has something stopped you in your tracks, to crouch low, drop your guard, and focus that lens?  What are you still thinking about long after the photo has been snapped?

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 #curiosity for this week and include @nwpianthology in your post.

So now I am curious about what makes your curious!  What are you noticing?  What has gone from ordinary to extraordinary as you paid more attention?  I can’t wait to see curiosity through your lens!

 

Urban Art?

There are two of these nailed to the telephone poles on either side of this bridge-like structure near my school.  I passed them yesterday without stopping, but today I had to take the time to capture a photograph.  They have me wondering and asking questions.

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Are they urban art?  An advertisement for something?  They can definitely work as a writing prompt!  What do you think?  What story would you tell?

On Noticing

One of the reasons I love taking pictures is that it helps me notice.  Instead of going full-speed-ahead about my life–checking this thing or the other off my ever growing to-do list and worrying about whether I will ever get caught up–noticing helps me slow down, appreciate interesting things around me, and then I find myself asking questions.  When I watched this caterpillar wiggle its way into a chrysalis, my curiosity about everything related to monarch butterflies became insatiable.  (This incredible process happened in the planter box right outside my classroom.  I was also experimenting with using a macro lens on my phone–as seen in the top two photos–helping me to really look closely and focus carefully.  More on focus to come!)

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As a result of what I had noticed and photographed, I wanted to know more.  I researched on the web, found and read non-fiction books, watched some incredible videos, talked to people around me, and enjoyed reading some fiction as well (Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver came out at the just the right time for me!).  I think that everyone around me also learned–whether they were interested or not–about monarchs and their life cycle!  But most importantly, this event heightened my noticing behavior.  Everywhere I went, indoors and out of doors, I was noticing: paying attention to patterns, colors, numbers, textures…subtleties in the world around me.

This article a friend of mine who works at the San Diego Natural History Museum referred me to reminded me of the importance of noticing–not just for me, but also for my students.  My favorite question to my students is always, “What do you notice?”  I ask that about text, about songs, about pictures, about math and science and social studies…about just about everything!

And even though we do a lot of noticing, I wonder if there is enough time in schools for noticing, for curiosity, for inquiring into things that are interesting.  As I photograph and write my way through the summer, I will also be thinking about that question–and the actions that I will take to make sure my students have ample opportunity to notice as part of their learning experience.  What do you do to help yourself (and the young people around you) notice?