A Hopeful Light


The weather doesn’t usually bother me all that much. One of the perks of being retired is that I only have to go out if I want to.

However, after months of gray Ohio winter, I am longing for some golden morning light. Or any sunlight, for that matter. Earlier this week, I created my own summer.

But, on my daily photo exursions, the overhanging bank of gray sky seems to be pressing down on me, driving away any excitement or inspiration where my camera is concerned.  I am struggling to find my way.

I still go out most days but I trudge rather than walk. My photographer’s eye is on the blink.

And yet. There have been days of icy winter sunlight. When the sky is a cold crystalline blue. Days when a building I have shot many times before transforms into something else – into a yearning monument to hope, reaching up into that endless blue, pointing the way.

Hope that spring and light and inspiration is just around the corner. That if I just keep putting one foot in front of the other, I will get there, back to myself.

Knowing that it is the daily walk through the gray that leads us to the light.


Linking with the Photo-Heart Connection, hosted by Kat Sloma


Posted on March 7, 2013, in Photography and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 31 Comments.

  1. I completely relate…beautiful photo and lovely thoughts!

    • Sherri – the “good” photos have been few and far between this winter. This is one of my favorites from that small group. I just happened to be here at the right time, when the sun was setting behind the building, adding that lovely glow.

  2. Beautiful, soothing image and yes, full of hope for brighter days. I, too, have been in a bit of a slump. Everything has seemed rather lifeless and dull. Maybe we’re just needing a little rest, so we’ll be full of energy on those beautiful blue sky days that I know are coming!

    • Cathy – you expressed it exactly – “lifeless and dull”. I’m not really depressed or anything – I just can’t seem to find anything interesting to shoot in all this grayness. When I started this year’s 365 Project, I gave myself an “out” – if I can’t get out to take an image, then it is okay to edit/process something from the archives. Maybe I just need to let myself do that until I can walk with some enthusiasm.

  3. I know what you mean, I feel the grey pressing down on me too. I guess sitting indoors and moaning about it isn’t going to help me any so I need to get out there and start trudging.

    • Kathryn – oh, yes – I am very familiar with the “trudge”. There are certainly days when trudging is worthwhile, when I manage to find something to shoot and there is some excitement generated. But there are other days when the trudging ends up just being trudging. I’m trying to learn when it might be better just to stay home and play with Photoshop, finding a different way to be creative, that will actually be of more benefit than blindly meeting my 365 Project commitment.

  4. Your image makes gray looks good — but I know how depressing lack of sun can be. Have you tried chocolate and bright flowers? Colorful scarves? One of my daughters lived in Seattle for four years and really suffered from SAD — she had to get a special lamp to help her deal with all the gray. Hope the sun comes out soon!

    • Gina – I had to laugh at your chocolate recommendation. If there was a 365 Project based on chocolate consumption, I would succeed every year. Having my daily dose of dark chocolate is non-negotiable. So I certainly do my part to keep my spirits up that way. The weather isn’t really affecting my mood so much as my creativity – I’m just really finding it difficult to find anything to shoot. The sun was out yesterday – and it was so much fun to be out there with shadows galore.

  5. Try some vitamin D! I’m not kidding – I suffer from SAD and it helped me immensely. Most people here in the northern hemisphere are Vit D deprived by this time of year because we can’t get enough sunlight to make what our bodies need. Those lights do help, too.

    • Lee – I do take Vitamin D with my calcium so hopefully I’m covered there. It’s not my mood so much as just a dip in creativity. I think I may take a “trudging” break – and fulfill my Project 365 commitment by editing/processing archive images – until I feel some excitement about getting out there again. News Flash! Rule-follower Breaking Own Project 365 Rules 🙂

  6. Fabulous composition! I shall say no more. I’ve already chatted your ear off today!

    Happy weekend!

    • Suzette – oh, you never have to apologize for stopping by and taking the time to comment. I do so appreciate your continued support for my work. Your visits make my day.

  7. I feel exactly the same way. After a very brief glimpse of spring we are back to the grey and rain which seems to have washed my inspiration away too. But we’ve had a glimpse and I’m staying hopeful too. Love this image – gorgeous composition and a lovely reminder of blue sky. Happy weekend. 🙂

    • Becs – “washed away” – that is definitely what it feels like. Somehow I have to find a way to make this grayness work for me instead of fighting what is. Wishing you a happy weekend as well.

  8. The daily walk that leads us to the light – oh so true! I find that when my eye is on the blink a walk anywhere usually helps…love your perspective in this shot, great eye!

    • Kim – Even when I grudgingly leave the house, expecting nothing, grumbling under my breath about the stupidity of taking on another 365 Project, I am grateful for what these daily walks provide.

  9. Beautiful, love the light coming from the top left. Great perspective too.

    • Leanne – I have shot this building multiple times and just when you think there isn’t possibly ANYTHING new that can be created, there it is – something new. No matter how many times this happens to me, I am still surprised that I can be surprised.

  10. What a stunning minimalist image. And – yes – that’s all any of us can do. One foot in front of another. This too shall pass..spring WILL come (Or so they say…).

    • Marcie – these past few months, my photo archive is short on inspiring shots like this one – but it is those moments, perhaps few and far between, that make the trudging worthwhile.

  11. Beautiful… it´s fantastic when we go out with the camera and we feel that something that we have seen many times has a different meaning, conveys a new message or it´s suddenly more appealing than ever before, isn´t it? This usually happens to me when I am not highly motivated (many times due the weather) or I don´t have positive expectations…

    Wonderful photo-heart connection

    • Zena – that experience is definitely one of the highlights of photography for me – that seeing something differently than ever before. It is like a gift – it makes the trudging and the less-than-stellar images worthwhile. The knowing that each time I walk out the door it could happen.

  12. LOVE this, Brenda! In-SPIRE! Breath hope into life. That is what you have done through this image, and your words. Both are beyond beautiful…and such a timely reminder that weather it’s the weather that’s grey, or life itself..putting one step in front of the other is so important. Thanks for the inspiration. 🙂 xo

    • Juli – I have been creatively struggling lately – so this day, this shot, were reminders that it is all worth it.

  13. This is such a “hopeful” image, Brenda. it’s days like these when I crave simplicity, which this image also demonstrates. At least we know that spring is just around the corner.

    • Kim – a friend is counting down until the beginning of “official” spring – only 9 days to go 🙂 Of course, it will take a little longer for “actual” spring to arrive here in Ohio – but I’ll take it in any form. I try to find simplicity in my work but don’t always succeed. But this image is an example of what I would like my work to become.

  14. This is a gorgeous photo–a Brenda classic. Blue on blue. Triangles and rectangles. Lines. Design. Composition.
    The end of winter can be a tough time.

    • Anita – yes, this is one of only a handful of photos from the past few months that captures what I want my work to be. All this grayness has pointed out how important light has become to me.

  15. Grayness does allow for images that can then be textured. But, I’m with you re. the depressing nature of gray days.

  16. “Knowing that it is the daily walk through the gray that leads us to the light.” Thanks, Brenda.

I greatly appreciate your comments!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: