simply put, my art is about exploring new ways of perceiving the world. the variety of perspectives found in my images, films, and writing exist to inspire others to embark on their own journeys of learning to experience life with expanded awareness.
i am grateful for where i’m at in my life.
at times, in the not too distant past, i was looking at what was wrong with things and how i’d really prefer to have my own land and live in a very natural place rather than a condo, etc. though more recently i’ve been shifting my perspective on things. as i was seeing things not working out how i liked and how some little things would trigger certain emotions, i began to almost give up, or surrender. the ego had gotten to a point of breaking. it had gone so far in one direction and continuing to go further would do no good. so it was time to turn around. i don’t remember exactly what caused me to make the decision to start to change my approach, though i did.
in doing so, and in remembering to look at what i’m grateful for, i begin to notice it more. i’m really grateful for where i am right here. though perhaps its not perfect or the ideal spot i’d like to live, i have my own condo and most of the time it is very quiet here. i live in one of the nicest parts of town, right near some very nice homes. its a world of a difference than living in other nearby areas where houses are right on a standard city grid layout. there are nice bike paths here, and a couple of nice parks on the lake within a short bike ride. just being in an area where everything is kept up and people care about what they have and the neighborhood makes a huge difference. the other day i was driving in tampa, and not even in the real bad parts, and in a couple of spots i went though, it just felt dirty or not kept up, and felt like there was a lower energy or overall consciousness there. then driving on a stretch of road that was full of commercial outlets and a little bit of traffic so it took longer to get through did not feel as nice either. it reminded me of how glad i am to live in a nice area and to usually only go to places that are calm, natural, and peaceful.
so many people live in such chaos. perhaps thats part of what i could feel when i was in a more congested area. it wasn’t dirty, per say, in terms of lots of garbage being out on the streets or anything, though it felt dirty in that there wasn’t as much of a concern or care for the area. the energy people radiate makes a huge difference in how a place is. which is why i truly love nature. the energy is so pure in nature. its only when people bring their lower energy to a place that it starts to deteriorate.
i’m grateful for not getting caught up in the chaos. i see the changes happening though a lot of people are still caught up in their own junk, drama, emotions, stories, etc that are running in their minds. in being engulfed in so much, people aren’t able to be present to the beauty that is around them. they think they have to do certain things certain ways, or they need all these external experiences, things, substances, etc, etc in order to feel better. all of those things are just their attempt to escape from their own chaos, but what they have yet to realize is that the true solution comes from within. they must face their own chaos internally and then they will release it and be free.
i’m not saying everything is perfect in my own perception, though i’m extremely grateful for having the awareness to have a different approach to life than so many seem to take. part of me is drawn to helping inspire and teach others new ways to see life. sometimes it just a subtle shift in perspective that could make a huge difference. if someone were to just change one little thing in their daily activities, or slowly learn to let go of the outcome and judgment associated with so much of life, one could begin to find a deep peace within.
practicing gratitude is one way to find peace. rather than look at what’s not working in your life, look at what you do have. there’s so much to be grateful for. just having this experience of life, having food to eat, a place to live, etc, etc are simple things to be grateful for. and likely you have much more than that to be grateful for as well.
i’m grateful for choosing a path of peace. not long ago, i had a battle with the ego it seems. not exactly, but the desires of the mind wanting more and wanting things to be a certain way or perfect really brought about unhappiness in my life. after changing my outlook on life, and coming back to a more peaceful path, i’ve noticed subtle differences in my life, and in a short manner of time. a lot of the frustration and anger at things not working out the way i wanted them to has begun to dissipate. in letting go of the need to control things (by having to do things certain ways, exert unnecessary effort to strive for this perfection, etc), i’ve enjoyed my experience of life more. i’ve also begun to let go of fears of not having enough financially and needing to struggle there (such as needing to find the very best deals, etc), which was only creating stress, tension, and burden in my life. i haven’t really thought too much about that, other than choosing to relax my perspective a bit, though if i look at my life, even in the past when i had run out of money, i always made it through somehow. (and around the time i had run out and was facing bankruptcy, i was able to change my approach on life so i could have fun and enjoy it, even without having income) everything will always work out. don’t get caught up in the details. know what direction you’re going and keep on moving forward. if things happen in your life that you don’t like, or challenges arise, you’ll make it through. you’ll find a creative way to overcome whatever life has presented you or a new perspective that will allow you to continue to flow with life. listen to your inner guidance and you won’t go wrong. sometimes things do happen as a wake up call in life, though by learning from these lessons in life, you can grow to new levels that were not possible before.
recently, in my photography, i was creating 360×180 little planet images from the air. i was really enjoying the look and had come up with a list of local places i wanted to make photographs at. it was a bit of a feat to accomplish this as there were a couple of hurdles to overcome in order to get it to look the way i wanted to (due to the technical manner in which i had to mount the camera lower than the landing gear of the quadcopter so i’d get a clear view of the surroundings). after one of my flights, i was unmounting my spherical camera and then saw that the plastic tripod mount that had been loose had finally given up and broken. gratefully this happened when it was in my hand rather than flying high over water. i don’t recall exactly how i felt, i was probably a little disappointed, though it wasn’t the end of the world. i did attempt to contact the manufacturer to inquire about a repair, and since have come up with other creative solutions and ideas to hold the camera so i can still use it. i don’t have a solution yet where i can mount it on my quadcopter (or kite) for the aerial photographs i was enjoying, though i can still mount it up on a pole for elevated views that way. so, despite having an experience i didn’t prefer, in letting go of attachment to things and outcome, i didn’t experience a huge emotional charge over the whole experience. also, now i’m looking at creative ways i can still create these images in different ways. with my current solution to mount the camera, i can place it over sand, dirt, or in water and do time-lapses with it. (which i’ve been wanting to explore time-lapses more with it but hadn’t as i was focusing on the aerial stills) i’ve also been thinking about using the camera very low to the ground for the effect that it makes with trees, buildings, etc coming up out of the little planet. so i’m learning to see this ‘bad’ experience in a good way. on this spiritual path, its also interesting to see how this did happen, as it was a bit of a test for my ego. the images i was creating were very unique and i don’t think had ever been done before (which have been areas i’ve always enjoyed exploring in photography to push the limits of what can be done). i was getting a lot of likes and followers when posting the images, many more than i had gotten with other more normal images. so it was interesting to see this as a test, as shortly before creating these images, i was choosing to embark back on the spiritual path, and when i could perhaps see this as wandering off a bit, this happened. i can also see this as a challenge to overcome to keep on creating new images, and to keep me connecting back with the creative source / inspiration. though i must step back and look at why am i really creating these images. part of the reason feels that it is to explore unique perspectives and there’s an underlying message in the images for others to explore their own unique perspectives and ways of seeing (so that they may embark on their own journey). while i can get carried away with the technical process of the image-making and do enjoy a lot of people liking the images, i feel i must put more energy and emphasis on a greater purpose beyond that aspect of it.
so where does all this rambling of my own recent story lead to? as i become more peaceful, i’ve been feeling the urge to help others do the same. i don’t know exactly what that looks like yet — perhaps its through writing, speaking, making videos, continuing to create lens-based art, in listening to and helping others, or some combination of these.
in becoming more peaceful in my own life, i naturally free up attention and energy so i may radiate out that peace to others in whatever way the higher part of me chooses to do so. one can be much more effective at doing anything by fully embracing it and becoming it — allowing that part of life to become the driving force and flowing with it. it’s really as simple as that. choose peace and all aspects of your life will come together in a peaceful way, and you will naturally and effortlessly radiate that energy out to others.
yet once again, i must let go of the desire to write and just allow it to happen. most, if not all, of this has come from my mind and thinking rather than my heart. i’ve been thinking too much about how the various pieces should come together and the details of what happened in the past events, rather than just allowing the words to flow out. one cannot force writing, creativity, anything. one must learn to tune into the feeling in one’s heart and go with that. before writing this, i was feeling into the feeling of being grateful and feeling some words and ideas that i could enscribe, though i hadn’t written it. i came back to sit down again and decided, okay, i’ll write it, but that decision was more from the mind rather than the feeling. i was trying to re-create the feelings that were fleeting in the moments i had had them shortly before. every moment is unique and different. don’t hang on to the feelings. just let them naturally flow out. the bits and pieces in the story don’t really matter. let go of your need for them to be accurate. this isn’t a test. this isn’t to get the exactly details of one sole experience into writing. this is to inspire others. so lets do that. put the energy, all of it, into what you do want to create, and forget about all of the rest, even if just for a few moments. then it will all come out very quickly, spontaneously, effortlessly, in the moment. and whatever comes out will be perfect, as it is. and if its not technically prefect, then thats what it is. the technical aspects, the technicality, does not matter. you’ve already demonstrated enough, well more than enough, that you are capable of doing technical things, that you are capable of hacking together ideas, components, etc. you have a brilliant mind but lets not get too engulfed in it. the mind isnt the final end all of this anyway. you know that. the higher levels of awareness are well beyond the mind. those are what truly matter. the mind can be a tool but dont let it run your life. its your mind, not your mind’s life.
wow so that last paragraph may be the only one that actually matters in all of this writing. its funny how that happens. let this be a testament to that. one last note. let it all go. let go of the story. let go of the need to convey anything. relax and be at peace. if a message comes through, so be it. if not, continue to go within, and enjoy the peace in the world, and then whatever needs to come through will, at the perfect time it needs to, or chooses to.
so perhaps this was all to demonstrate the clearing of thoughts as part of the creative or inspirational process. when you let go of what is on the mind and get past all the ego stuff, then a higher message can come through much more effortlessly. when you are blocked by looking at all this stuff and thinking about it and thinking that is what matters, then the messages do not come through quite so easily or at all. so the most important thing to do is to focus on being peaceful, on letting go of attachment, of surrendering to and embracing the moment as it is. the past and the future do not matter. just the here and the now. be here and now. live from this place. this is all we have anyhow.