Tag Archives: Pattern

Learning from Patterns

This week the #sdawpphotovoices photo-a-day focus has been patterns.  And while I have taken photos of the patterns I have found, I have also been thinking about my own patterns…patterns of thinking and patterns of behavior.

Being back at work definitely re-directed my attention from photography to my classroom.  On Monday I remember getting home, feeling tired and realizing I hadn’t taken a single photo all day!  Taking a look around the house for interesting patterns led me to my macro lens…I took pictures of the center of the succulents in the kitchen window.  Using picstitch I put four pictures together and posted with the caption, “What patterns do you see?”


Is it cheating to create your own pattern by stitching photos together?  Tuesday and Wednesday were also days where the photos I posted didn’t really reflect patterns as they are defined in the design world.  I didn’t want to post photos of tiles or carpet or brick or other typical patterns.

On Thursday I was more inspired and had already taken several photos of patterns when I squeezed in a five minute pattern walk between errands in the afternoon.  (You can see more of Thursday’s patterns here.)  This was the day when I realized how important it is to take some time every day to do something just for yourself.  Those five minutes I spent looking for and photographing patterns were energizing and relaxing.  This is a practice I want to make sure to develop.

Most of the patterns I photographed this week were organic–nature’s beauty unveiled in heirloom tomatoes, cactus blossoms, clouds, and kelp.  Even the man-made patterns I captured often had an element of nature to them, I found myself looking at shadows and seeing patterns repeated by the sun’s angles.






So I’ve noticed that my photo-a-day theme does make me look at the world differently than I might without it, but that regardless of the theme, I take pictures that catch my eye…and then play with language and ideas to make them work as I post.

So my two take aways for the week are:

1.  Take time to do something I enjoy each day (photography is an example of this), even if the photos don’t match the theme.

2.  It’s okay to play with the theme if it works for the photography–isn’t that the point after all?

What patterns do you notice in your life?  Which will you change and which will you embrace?

Next week is repetition…I wonder what that will teach me?

Pattern Walk

Being back in my classroom preparing for my students’ arrival next week has taken much of my time, attention, and energy this week.  It’s already Thursday and I haven’t really given much effort to finding patterns for my photo-a-day challenge. (#sdawpphotovoices)  So today I was intentional about looking for patterns and taking some photos.

I started the morning by finding that Margit had put up a beautifully patterned backdrop on the classroom wall in anticipation of some student work that will be created next week.  I love the colors and textures of the paper…and this is just a snippet of the larger wall.


As I headed to the other school for a morning of inservice, this odd assortment of chairs was sitting outside in front of a pattern of wall tiles.  I like the slightly shuffled look of the chairs.  And it’s funny, because when I came out three hours later the chairs were neatly ordered…a pattern I didn’t capture with my camera.


Coming back to my school I noticed this bike rack in front of the office.  I was intrigued by the shadows on the right hand side, adding another dimension to the pattern.


When I left school this afternoon I ended up with a short window of time to myself.  I stopped by Starbucks for an afternoon coffee and took a wonderful learning walk around the area.  I was surprised by all the patterns I found.  These four were all around a local restaurant.  Textures, shadows, colors, and peek-a-boos all caught my eye!

I haven’t really thought about the way that looking for photo opportunities and framing interesting shots both feeds and relaxes me.  My short five-minute walk and photography session was a boost to my feeling of well-being and energy level.  I need to remember to find these windows of time–even when I am busy.  Hours later I still feel refreshed by my afternoon pattern walk!