- by Janet St. John
Art & Soul Seeing #1
In an attempt to expand my ways of seeing and being in the world, I have been working with Kim Manley Ort's Adventures in Seeing. Following the exercises she outlines in the book, I began my first photographic-life adventure with Habit #1: Pause. Some of my efforts are shown above.
This first habit was quite challenging, largely because the past month was booked solid with work and personal obligations. However, on my morning dog walks, I glanced around a lot, forced myself to stop moving and investigate whatever caught my attention—an orange wildflower burst from a sidewalk crack like a tiny firework, a hollowed log made home for ferns, the first spring blooms of irises, red bud tree, and yellow trumpet flowers. Kim’s “adventures” in finding symbols of openness, awakening the senses, looking for changes, and following intuition were excellent guides that led my eyes (with and without a lens), but also led my mind.
Is it any coincidence that I barely participated in social media during this time of exploring Kim’s practices? Is it surprising that, despite being so mentally and time-wise occupied, I recalled more of my dreams and sought a stronger feeling of presence in natural settings?
This first habit was a reminder for me about stepping back and taking time to notice and reflect. I hope to hold this habit inside as I continue with Kim's Adventures in Seeing. I hope, too, that you will consider joining me on this photographic and lifestyle journey.
Thanks for meeting me here!