Getting Back Into It

When I was first diagnosed with my illness, I got into photography. I felt a sense of calm descend on me when I took photos. I liked the way you could look through the lens and see something completely different than when you looked at the whole scene. I enjoyed capturing normal things in random ways that made you think twice about what you were actually looking at.

I took my camera to the Butchart Gardens where I had a wealth of flora to photograph. I walked around the property we rented in Black Creek, on north Vancouver Island, taking photos of wooden sheds and abandoned old cars in the woods. At the beach I photographed shells in the sand and herring eggs like pearls attached to seaweed. When we moved to the south Island I went on photo fieldtrips to places like Government House, the estate of the Lieutenant Governor, or the Fort Rodd Hill and Fisgard Lighthouse National Historic Site.

As I wrote last week, I gave up a lot of photography for writing. Because of my limited energy, the time I took for writing took away from the time I had for photography. And as my illness progressed and my energy levels continued to decline, I eventually gave up photography altogether.

But now that my book is in the publication process and I’m not taking on any shorter freelance pieces, I want to get back into photography. I was elated that, on a recent hike at Cobble Hill mountain (when I stopped on the switchbacks to catch my breath), I saw something with my photographer’s eye: a sprig of fern against a background of a moss-covered block of concrete. I still have that way of seeing, I just have to exercise the seeing muscle.

This week I’m sharing some of my favourite photos from when I was really into photography. Hope to have more soon.

Under the bridge in Comox/Courtenay.

Boat sheds, Genoa Bay.

Feather on wood.

Water plants, Cowichan Estuary.

Struggling through the ice, Black Creek.

Field of poppies, Royston.

Landscape in the sand.

Gomphrena, Butchart Gardens.

Grey wood, blue lock.

Alder catkins, Black Creek.

Iron and wood.

Wheelbarrow, Butchart Gardens.

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