A few days ago, I was surfing the 'net, hopping from link to link (as you do), and I came across this post from a blog I'd never read before, Hippy Urban Girl. The post explains her idea called "December views" -- in essence, since December is often a frenetic busy time for most of us as we celebrate, wind down old years and get ready for new ones, she plans to use her blog by limiting its words, and instead expressing herself contemplatively through images, each day of the month. It is her way of slowing down, and helping her readers slow down as well.
On a whim, I decided to participate. I didn't start on December 1st -- I started a few days later -- but the beauty of December views is that there are no rules, and you can join in whenever you'd like. It's been a interesting experience. I don't keep to only images, but instead of my single-image-a-day way of usually posting, I've been posting multiple images. Some posts I add words, but I try to keep them to a minimum; others are images alone.
What I've found is that blogging only images sometimes feels far more intimate than adding words. I'm not sure why that is -- maybe it's easier for me to edit my words to convey exactly what I want to say (and hide others), but with images, it's not so easy? Maybe?
I'm not sure.
Regardless, the upshot is that taking photographs mindfully to share with readers has required that I slow down and breathe, savouring the moments I take to look through the viewfinder. In addition, looking at the work of the other bloggers who are participating as given me an opportunity to be still and contemplate their work -- and let's face it, at the end of a year, who couldn't do with a bit of quiet and mindful contemplation?
So I encourage you to join in the fun -- simply sign up your blog with Hippy Urban Girl. Or, in the alternative, take a look at some of the work some of the participants are doing. In particular, the following are a few of my favourites:
Stephanie Renee, who seems to be sticking to images-only guidelines -- and the result is an intimate showing of her beautiful day-to-day life.
Out of hands, where each day seems to revolve around a theme of texture or colour. Beautiful.
If there was ever a question about whether an expensive, huge SLR camera would be required to participate, art yowza puts that noise to rest: she is participating with images from her iPhone. And they are stunning.
Karen Walrond is a writer and photographer in Houston, Texas. Read/See more of her life at www.chookooloonks.com
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