Maryellen Sullivan

For me a big part of this photography class is about learning to see.  As a lawyer and an academic I spent many years “in my head.”  Both of those professions emphasize critical thinking skills and mine are finely honed.  Less well-developed are my observational skills.  For example, when I was in college, someone once asked me the color of the carpet in my dorm room.  I had no idea even though I was living there at the time.  If you were to ask me what my husband was wearing when he left for work, I would look at you blankly.  So, learning to really look, observe, and see is all very new and exciting to me. 

When I was out walking today I saw a grouping of mailboxes that appealed to me and decided to take a few shots.  As I was shooting from different angles, I suddenly noticed something in the woods.  A door.  No walls, no windows, no ceiling.  Just a door!   When I looked more closely, I noticed something else. The door was locked!  This set me to wondering if there is a message here. 

When a door appears to be locked, try walking around it?

Maryellen Sullivan

The first assignment in the Photographer’s Workroom class was to take 12-15 photos of one object.  It was too cold to take photos outside and Bob and I don’t have many items of interest in the house.  In keeping with our desire to live a simple lifestyle (and our equally fervent desire not to spend too much time cleaning) we have neither tchotchkes nor heirlooms.  Actually, I think that funky little pheasant lamp that belonged to Bob’s uncles and aunt would qualify as both a tchotchke and an heirloom.  But I didn’t feel like photographing that.  As it turned out, Bob decided to photograph that lamp.  So, it was just as well. 

                  Since I couldn’t decide what to photograph I decided to go for a walk.  I headed toward Emily’s Bridge, which is a walk I frequently take with my dogs.  As I walked, I thought about taking pictures of the bridge.  But how many pictures can one really take of a bridge?  I wasn’t that enthusiastic but couldn’t think of anything else.  Since I had my iphone with me, I took some shots.  The more shots I took, the more shots I saw, which resulted in taking more, seeing more, taking more, seeing more.….  Suddenly, this project became fun and exciting.  I went back three more times and took dozens of shots. 

Here are a few of them:

The lesson I seem to keep learning is this:   just begin.