A Year of Creating Dangerously, Day 114: Curing a Case of the Nastys


“I thank you God for this most amazing day, for the leaping greenly spirits of trees, and for the blue dream of sky and for everything which is natural, which is infinite, which is yes.”  – e. e. cummings

Sunday morning I woke up way earlier than I had to and way crankier than normal. I will spare you the details but I’ve not been sleeping well lately. My mourning mornings used to be cheered with coffee. Now even that blessed beverage is not doing the trick. However, the sun was shining. The sky was a brilliant blue. And since I had woken up before I needed to, I found myself with extra time… So, what to do?

A Photo Walkabout, that’s what.

I call my wanderings with my camera “walkabouts” for a reason. Connecting with the Australian aboriginal idea of a spiritual journey, my photo hikes are my form of opening myself up to God, wondering in Creation, and letting that “infinite” and that “yes” that e.e. cummings talks about drive out any case of the Nastys I am dealing with at the time.

It’s a soul cleanse; a mental detox via nature. Taking a camera along helps me focus (there was a pun intended there… sorry). I tend to look at things more closely, linger longer in one spot, take in the details and take time to search for the unexpected when I have a camera. I think as an artist it gives me a chance to make some instant art of the moment, or at least to know I’ve recorded something that I can revisit later. It is a tangible thing to take away from an experience of glorious intangibles.

This latest Walkabout was at one of my favorite spots: the Mer Bleue Conservation Area, a large and unique peat bog that has encouraged the growth of plants that you would normally find in a tundra region. There is a boardwalk through the peat bog. The place is a beautiful and paradoxical spot of peace and quiet along with the commotion and song of birds. I have been here many, many times over the years and I never tire of it.

Below are photos taken on my Walkabout. Did it do me good after my awful night to be out there early Sunday morning? Yes, infinitely Yes.



A Year of Creating Dangerously, Day 40: Second Photo Walkabout of 2017



Well, it didn’t take me long to get back out hiking with my camera in hand. I was in need of the anti-anxiety medication that is a heavy dose of the Great Outdoors. I ventured to a different trail in the Mer Bleue Conservation Area. The trail began with the bold and mighty chickadees and the joy of seeing a yellow-bellied sapsucker up close (usually they are way up in the trees, tapping away). Mostly, I welcomed a quiet and still place, the cold air in my face, and the chance to think and breathe.

In my photo-taking, I tried to pay more attention to the small things, the details along the way. Some winter days seem like living in Black and White TV or in sepia tone-land, depending on the sunlight; the colors aren’t showy, if any show themselves at all. You don’t get the burst of color from other times of the year, of course. Everything seems to be waiting, just biding its time, in no rush but laying in wait when Spring shows up. Everything, that is, except the busy Chickadees!