I have been taking photographs on and off since I was a child. Technically I know what I am doing with a camera in hand and generally I produce a pleasant enough composition from a particular scene. However, what Angie draws out of her students is the passion to look beyond 'pleasant enough'. Most people will do 'pleasant enough' in any aspect of their lives if they practice for long enough, but how different does Life look when they go for the X- or Wow-factor?
As part of our week, in the evenings we watched videos about extraordinary photographers - Sally Mann, Vivian Maier and Annie Leibovitz, to name some of them. Each of them has (or had) the capacity to have their audience see the world in the way they did, to see the beauty, sometimes the darkness but always the extraordinary-ness of the world and people who inhabit it. To look at their work is to gain another perspective on the world and be inspired to see beyond the obvious.
So it occurred to me that we can easily do Life in a 'pleasant enough' way, or we can stretch for the extraordinary, and offer Wow to ourselves and others. Whether we ever achieve it or not is a subjective judgment and therefore doesn't especially matter. It also doesn't have to be photography, art or music. We can stretch in any direction in which we may be pulled.
What matters more is that we have the experience of seeing the extra-ordinary, of touching and feeling and doing the extra-ordinary and of knowing that we have drawn on all the wonderful gifts with which we were blessed.
Sure, cruise along and do 'pleasant enough' when that is where the energy levels are, but every now and then stretch to a place beyond the ordinary and discover what's there.
You'll be so glad you did.