Solitude I Can Justify

2017-12-31

Not to be idle, and also to say farewell to 2017 and to welcome 2018, I am doing the free WordPress course, ten days long, called Developing Your Eye, to help me get a little better as a photographer. Honestly, I am a week late, but there has been holiday fun, the intense winter weather, and other reasons to procrastinate.

To complete the exercise for Day Six of the course, I took to the idea of solitude. How I thought to illustrate solitude is to show the vantage point of a walking trail up the street from where I live, between an elementary school where some of my education took place when I was little, and a gospel chapel on the other side of the trail.

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A gospel chapel the last day of the year

While I don’t attend the chapel, this point of origin symbolizes for me the distance between my home now, to the road to where my parents live, and where I spent my teenage years and most of my twenties. Down the street I live alone. The solitude is having left where I resided in my younger years.

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On the path beside the gospel chapel

In 1978 DC Comics gave us the big screen adaptation of the Superman comic starring the late Christopher Reeves–I realize the film belongs to a generation older than mine. Superman, reflecting on his power, travels north to his Fortress of Solitude to find answers about his fate and his obligation as a hero.

The silver screen images of Superman’s Fortress of Solitude became so iconic that even in the present Henry Cavill version of the Superman saga the recreated Fortress of Solitude in his films strongly resembles the design of the 1978 film with Christopher Reeve. The nineteen seventies Fortress of Solitude has been translated to the current Superman films with a similar design that remembers Superman on film in the seventies and eighties.

Why does the caped superhero require solitude? Solitude can permit a person to approach life with his own direction, unimpeded by the feedback of others.

The town here is small but it is a city–it is never that lonesome. There is contact with people each and every day.

It doesn’t mean that I don’t cultivate an attitude of preserving solitude, and I imagine it shows in the style of the blog I write and in the appearance of the photos I take. I imagine many humans likewise treasure their solitude, particularly in that as adults there are so many demands and requirements for living in a Western culture that we have little choice but to conform.

When there is an opportunity for solitude, in contrast to what we are tasked with doing in the course of day-to-day work, solitude becomes extremely valuable, at least in small measures. In other words, silence is golden.

I realize it is ironic I am writing that when blogging can be seen as a search for a community (and WordPress is an inclusive community). Blogging is a given in this day and age–if you have even a basic amount of computer literacy, it is not surprising if you are blogging.

If you are doing business, and you personally have some computer literacy or otherwise a member of your team is computer-literate, you should have a blog. Even as I assert my blog is not making me money, that doesn’t mean I don’t want to pursue it. I suppose I am trying to have my cake and eat it, too, but I have the solitude that I think makes me truer and I am likewise active at participating in the Internet, which is millions and millions of others.

I don’t think foregoing solitude is the answer, but I respect those people for whom blogging is not just satisfying as an opportunity to make discoveries, but who profit financially by being business-savvy with the blogging that they do.

You can find my church at https://www.facebook.com/LouthUnited

Narrowing Down How People Interrelate

2017-12-30

To improve my photography, I am participating in a free ten-day course from WordPress, Developing Your Eye.  Although I am an entire week late, I am proceeding much more closely to schedule now and today’s theme for a photography exercise is the idea of “connection,” however it’s interpreted.

 

Millions and millions of people have connected to the Internet.  It is incredible to think how much goes on that so many styles of content are unique to specific demographics and outside the range of what you are yourself encountering when you use the Internet.  You may even find yourself extolled to forego these channels of communication and return to the physical realm of real interpersonal networking and socializing.

 

One example of connection is what happens in a coffee shop, clearly.  So many creative types find themselves drawn to coffee shops for the conversation, but they appeal to many, many others regardless of the propensity to show up as creatives or not.  In some coffee shops you can take advantage of free Wi-Fi, as well, so if you are not there to read materials like books or newspapers, or to take advantage of the opportunity to eavesdrop, you could be there for the purpose of availing yourself of the Internet in a public atmosphere as well.

 

I took a photo of a coffee shop from the vantage point of just outside the drive-through lane, where you can see people getting their wares to go while inside the restaurant is very busy and active.  I hope you like it.

 

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Coffee shop on a wintery Saturday

I took a second photo, as well, because while a public spot like a coffee shop is a tangible meeting place to “connect,” I don’t want to overlook the fact that in the same plaza where I took the first photo there is a camera shop, which I couldn’t resist photographing given that I am participating in a photography course.  I am sure they sell high-end cameras in there, although I have never traversed the premises except to walk by.  You can see, though, the highlights of their gear on the sign hanging above it, and that idea reinforces what is often the end result of connections forged:  the image captured.

 

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Camera store sign

Particularly when smartphone images go straight to social media, when a noteworthy moment has occurred, it goes almost without saying that these are the tools of the Internet, and I wanted myself to quickly capture the photo and return to blogging.

 

The first five days of the exercise were delayed mid-course by the arrival of Christmas and by the extreme winter conditions, as well as my general procrastination trying to think how best to tackle the course.  The course is written for beginner-level photographers, and I am a beginner, but a little more seasoned than that, I think, as I have been taking photos consistently since the beginning of 2013.  It is five years of taking photos, so perhaps I should own up and admit that I have put a little work into the hobby of photography, however much I admit I’ve never been schooled.

 

Connections are formed on the Internet on a nonstop basis and while the minutia of examining the human trait of connecting can be evaluated in a myriad of scopes and designs, the connections that consistently strike me as the most interesting among humans are the way people intently gravitate to assigning their lives to the Internet and presenting themselves on social media and elsewhere in a way that has never been done, where individualism and self-representation have never been done in such an unchecked manner.

The Silver Screen in the Storm

2017-12-29

I am extremely late working on this free course from WordPress to help me get better as a photographer.  With the extreme winter, the busy holidays, and the relative difficulty of thinking how to proceed, at last, I am ready to make a post with the next exercise in photography at the ready and on the Internet.  Day Four of the beginner-level WordPress course “Developing Your Eye” asks participants to reflect with a photo about bliss–this is what I have for you.

 

2017-12-29
Landmark Cinemas at the Pen

One of the cool things I got to experience when I was a boy was watching a film, and for a long time, we didn’t have cable television in our house (I suppose it’s lucky we had electricity–joking, of course, we certainly did)… but I did get to visit the movie house and it opened what I expect will be a lifelong cycle of happiness creating memories that contain a component of elusive bliss.

 

I can remember without being aware of much else famous movie titles that I got to see, and I suppose the end result of a childhood like that is an adulthood rich with “geekdom”–that movies continue to light a casual passion in my life and I remember to enjoy them.  They light a bit of freedom that should be cherished amid the changing times that sweep by all.  The movies remain an institution of great cultural impact and richness.

 

My photo today is of the exterior of the commercial cinema in the mall in the other end of town, and, as previously mentioned, the winter weather so far this year is fierce–you can see the swirling snow.  I nearly came home with less clothing than I’d worn.

 

Blogging with WordPress is an amazing hobby–I am consistently impressed by the visitors who leave “likes” on the posts which are of a passing grade.  I hope that by the end of this course in photography I have improved as a photographer and I hope blogging takes me into 2018 with aplomb and continues to serve as a communication tool by which excellent connections are forged.  Thank you!

Splashes of Shape In a Light Winter Snow at Christmas

2017-12-22

To make improvements in my photography I am participating in a free ten-day course from WordPress which is helping to get me a touch better at snapping pictures. I am a day late today but I want to go back to yesterday’s instructions which were to think of water and try two orientations with your photo, horizontal and vertical.

The vertical photo is better than the horizontal photo because it is like a piece of experimental photography. The little touch of color which are blurred Christmas lights give the photo the best element of visual appeal it possesses. The horizontal photo is blurry, which is normal across the board for cameras–sometimes a blurry photo is effective if you think of a blur being a selling point for what you might coin art photography (art).

In this case, mine is more butt art–more effective when I reached beyond my stride than when I tried something that would work for me. I’ll show you both photos.

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Water Between Snowbanks
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Water Between Snowbanks Vertically

If You Were in Our Downtown Core or at the Fairview

2017-12-20

To finish the year 2017, I am doing the free 10-day Developing Your Eye course from WordPress designed to start bloggers getting better at their photography and providing a bit of a networking opportunity.  Today I took a “wide-angle” photo of the spot where visiting my neighborhood you might start if you were bringing yourself here from the downtown terminal or from the Fairview, wherever you were.

 

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The Neighbourhood In Perhaps from the Downtown Core or the Fairview

Yesterday’s post beginning the photo course went well and we’ll see if any other decent photos come from my camera during the exercises.  Thanks for visiting my blog.

Home

To celebrate the end of 2017, I am participating in the ten-day Developing Your Eye course available for free from WordPress.  My aim is to improve my photography and to enjoy similar photos shot by others interested in photography on WordPress.  I shoot with a point-and-click for ease (I count myself a beginner).

 

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This Way Returning Home

This is the bridge that traverses the creek across which I ride home when I am done my work at Maple Lawn Cemetery.

What We Bear Intuitively Has Its Spark Ahead

In the grade ten science class I signed up for as a youth we were taught in one lesson about magnetic north, the point of magnetism at the Earth’s crest that attracts the needle of a magnet to correctly tells direction.

To think of the utmost north of the planet, you might think of packs of wolves, or avalanches, or penguins on icebergs.  If you’re in North America, you think of the land called Canada.compass rose

I imagine that traversing the Arctic Circle would be an adventure.  It would mean frigid seas, icy lands, unknown outcomes and great daring.  Quite a calling indeed.

A journey of that kind requires bravery, certainly, but a bravery I speculate as well often comes in a much more everyday sort, bravery in the face of adversity that meets you anytime.  There are everyday challenges people experience in their lives, wherever they are, that call on a summons to bravery that doesn’t go documented or rewarded in a grandiose sense or generally very much even recounted.

Human beings draw on a reserve of bravery in their individual lives just about every day of their lives.  The thing that is certain is that life is uncertain.

While drawing on the probability that mankind desires above all else satisfaction, found in calm avenues amid gentility, it doesn’t mean the individual doesn’t struggle.

There is a fundamental desire to capture the most of the resources which can be had, I think.  It explains why it is people invest so much time and energy in competition.

In grade ten the gentleman schooling us in magnetism could have said more about what it would take come adulthood.  The long and short is he didn’t.

Today’s WordPress Daily Prompt is the word compass.  Thank you for glancing upon this utterance, and good luck to you as together we forge a future that requires steadfast resolution.

I recommend you seize the day, but temper your passions with kindness.  Like your desire, magnetic north should never shift.