Sunday, May 3, 2015

Life: Ugliness and Beauty Through the Eyes of an Artist

There can be beauty in ugliness

From the outside, some may not think of photographers as artists but I say truly they are. Among my many creative outlets, photography is one. It requires an artistic mind to not only compose a shot but to think ahead about the light and shadows, the colors and over-all emotion of a scene we plan to capture and then there are of course the technical components of the capture.

So many of us take great pleasure in showing the beauty of life. We can zero in on the tiniest beautiful flower in a field of pure ugliness, focus in on the shot, take it and voila! We have now made something beautiful emerge from something not so appealing. The very picture I’ve posted with this article is an example.

California is in drought and nothing I do can keep my plants alive when I have to cut back on water (yes, I’m one of the few who actually follows the rules). So, my last remaining potted plant to survive the unending streams of heat waves and lack of water gifted me a few last tiny little flowers.

If I hadn’t stopped to look, I’d have missed its last hurrah. I’ll try to save it if I can because it’s so beautiful but it’s just not looking good. From this picture, all you see is the color, the set up and the vision I wanted you to see. You don’t see all the dead and withering blooms all around it. You don’t see anything other than the beauty I want you to see.

What you focus on, you create

Likewise, some of us wish to train our lens on the plight of those who struggle in the city, in sparsely populated or even overly populated areas. Even in an ugly city, an artistic photographer can capture beautiful lines in the architecture and compose the shot in beautiful harmony despite the surrounds.

This form of art is to me quite a spiritual endeavor. You see, we create sometimes from pure ugliness a work of beauty or we take the ugliness and show you hope. The artists of this world are often starving because of our love of the challenge of showing you something from another perspective. As a practitioner in metaphysics, it’s part of my job to show you the beauty that dwells deep within you and within this amazing and wonderful universe. It’s my role to show you how much power you have to paint your life like a skilled artist even when you’re dealing with the ugliness.  When I'm taking pictures, I'm reminded that we have the power to see from only certain perspectives or to show certain perspectives.

Color your world the way you want

We are the artists of our lives too. We can train our eyes on the beauty or the ugliness as we so choose. We can feel the emotion of it or ignore it. So many choices do we have. Just like the photographer who chooses carefully what he or she most wishes to convey with one perfectly timed shot. So too do you live your life whether consciously or unconsciously.

However you choose to present yourself, there will be those who will see your beauty and there will be those who see your ugliness. We all possess both to a degree as does this amazing world we live in. But, I remind you again, YOU are the artist and you get to choose how you show up here and which perspectives you will give life to. Thank you for showing up here. I challenge you to let that artistic part of your being come out every now and then and like a photographer or painter, capture something before you in your mind and study it a moment in silence and with appreciation. You can choose what you will bring out of that moment and the perspectives you will carry from it. It’s up to you and how creative you wish to be.

© 2015 Jaie Hart (photo/words)

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