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Ideas and plans?

©Meandering Passage - Earl Moore Photography - Spring field and forest

Walking the fields and woods nearly every morning this winter I’d grown accustomed to the dull brown and grey leafless winter landscape.  This past week I witnessed a sudden  change in the color pallet nature is “painting” with.

©Meandering Passage - Earl Moore Photography - Spring colorsThere is an infectious freshness and vibrance to the  landscape now and each day marks more noticeable changes.

I’d wish this vibrance would lend energy to my legs during my morning walks but I’m thankful for at least a temporary uplift of mind and spirit.

The variance of weather patterns, I believe due to  mankind influenced climate change but others may not, has made predicting  day-to-day weather hap-hazardous at best.

As Henry Van Dyke said,  “The first day of spring is one thing, and the first spring day is another. The difference between them is sometimes as great as a month.”

I’m happy to report, and to have experienced, a few of those “first spring days” here already. I’m also hopeful spring will bring back my enthusiasm for photography and even blogging — both have been suffering recently, almost to the point of apathy.

©Meandering Passage - Earl Moore Photography - Brightly colored spring leaves

Universal British historian Arnold Joseph Toynbee belived, “Apathy can be overcome by enthusiasm, and enthusiasm can only be aroused by two things: first, an ideal, with takes the imagination by storm, and second, a definite intelligible plan for carrying that ideal into practice.”

It doesn’t sound difficult to counteract apathy when put in Toynbee’s terms — especially since he never states the idea or the plan has to be grand — the idea only need capture the imagination.

©Meandering Passage - Earl Moore Photography - Red Spring TulipsI do have a few imaginative but undeveloped ideas rattling around in my head, perhaps I’ve been only missing the needed plans.

What about you — any specific ideas you’d like to carrying into practice this new season?

16 Comments on Ideas and plans?

  1. We’re starting to experience our first days of Autumn. Of course, all that means is that it’s getting a little cooler, otherwise everything looks much the same.

    Apathy can be disconcerting and Toynbee’s advice sounds good but it seems to me that it is a little akin to advising someone suffering from depression to simply look on the bright side of life. Ideas and plans are not all that easy to conjure up on demand. To me they are the types of thought that often come out of the blue at unexpected moments. At least the good ones that really get us started. They’re the ones that build enthusiasm rather than the ones that we force on ourselves.

    These days I don’t even try to fight apathy when it sets in. I simply use it as a time to slow down, physically, mentally, even creatively. I simply trust that time will take care of it. It always has in the past. In my experience, trying to fight apathy (specially creative apathy) can lead to feelings of self-doubt or even depression which only makes the situation worse.

    Judging by the lovely photos on this post, I suspect the changes in your surroundings will dispel your apathy, the way the sun clears away a morning fog.

    All the best.
    Cedric Canard recently posted… The rightness of wrong

    • Cedric, Perhaps the most interesting thing of this “down” period, compared to past ones I’ve experienced, is I’ve been quite comfortable with it — certainly haven’t been looking or seeking a “cure.” In any case it is what it is and I’m okay with that. Thanks. :-)

  2. I also need to” get back at it” once again as spring begins to show!
    Steve Skinner recently posted… Thoughts On The Forest

    • Steve, in terms of spring yard work I’m probably further along then I’ve ever been before — in photography, not so much. ;-)

  3. When I was in the military I had a buddy who became very depressed and homesick and hadn’t seen his family for quite a while. There was little I could do to console him. Fortunately, we had a CO who excelled at handling situations like this. He would yell, at the top of his lungs, “SNAP OUT OF IT, SOLDIER”. Worked every time.
    Seriously, we all get the blues once in a while and when I get the blues I listen to the blues. It’s different for everybody but you’ve got to find that thing that lifts you up and makes you want to go on. judging from these photos, you’re well on your way to recovery.
    ken bello recently posted… 300

    • Ken, as I was telling Cedric above, I’ve been more comfortable with this “down” time then ever before…and it’s been longer — maybe that’s trying to tell me something. I’ll need to keep listening. Thanks. :-)

  4. Paul Maxim // 14 Apr ’13 at 7:34 am // Reply

    I’m with Cedric on this one. We all get “hit” by these periods of apathy or low creativity or general disinterest in the world at large. It happens to everyone. And there is no single piece of advice or wisdom or “self-help” book that will magically clear things up. Except, of course, time. As Cedric points out, fighting it can be a fruitless battle and might even make things worse. You just have to wait it out. The energy will return. It always does.

    My only wish is that we might get some signs of spring up here like you’re seeing in NC. I’ve seen a few flowers trying to bust through, but they’re being either drowned by all the rain or blown over by the wind. I think I’ll head back to the southwest……….

    • Paul, I agree with you and Cedric. I certainly haven’t been fighting it. I’ve actually been mighty comfortable with it. :-)

      I’d be happy to send a little of this spring your way if I knew how. It’s been raining here about once a week and I’ve had to mow my yard twice this past last week and it’s needing it again. This would probably be my favorite time of year if it was for all the pollen and allergies it brings.

  5. I think we all suffer in the winter months from general misery caused by the unrelenting cold, the grey skies, the lack of colour, the lack of sun and the long dark nights. A significant number of people in the latter months of winter suffer from a clinical condition called SAD – Seasonal Affective Disorder. It’s believed to be due to a lack of sunlight. The more we can get out when Spring finally arrives the faster we are likely to recover – both because of the beneficial effects of sunlight itself, and because the vibrancy of Spring is often enough to naturally lift our spirits. Hope is close at hand, hopefully. Lovely images by the way.
    LensScaper recently posted… Curtain down on Winter

    • Andy, since there’s not much I can do about it anyway, I’m trying to sit back, observe and listen to my inner voice. I’m a quiet guy sometime…even my inner voice. ;-)

  6. In going along with Cedric the ideas and plans could be negative and harmful rather than positive or nurturing. That would be dependent on the persons state of mind. If apathy is a lack of emotion or interest towards a subject or life then all of us experience it. As for me the blogging and photography has taken a back seat to a couple of other passions. I have a lost photography projects and even now keep adding to them, yet may not be putting into action those projects.

    I also know that the changes going on in my life have affected my photography. Working part-time, making changes to my budget, having my daughter and two grandchildren move in for a short period of time, have all contributed to this place in my photography. I still carry my camera as it has become an essential part of my life. I still look for images, snap a few frames each day. The passion is still there. The love of photography is still there. Maybe it’s evolving into something else.

    In answer to your question, yes, I have some things mulling around in my head. One of them is to work at more portraits. Great post, Earl.
    Monte Stevens recently posted… The Hustler

    • Thanks, Monte. Life is certainly full of changes and the unexpected isn’t it. Luckily many of those changes turn our to be positive in the long run, even when we don’t recognize it at first. Truth be told I’ve been comfortable with this latest down time…maybe I’m just feeling a little laze. :-)


  7. I think we all have to deal with apathy and yes, sometimes depression, in our own ways with our own methods. For me, I can’t say what works. Sometimes a new piece of equipment, other times an inspriring article and still at otherr times an abrupt change in attitude, emanating from an unknown source can do it. In other words, for me, I can’t pin down what will have the effect I need to bring me around.

    Excellent post, excellent images!
    John – Visual Notebook recently posted… Common Things #7 – Inspiration

    • John, I’m trying to be good and stay away from that “new piece of equipment” fix. ;-) But I have to admit that has sometimes worked for me in the past. LOL


  8. I love how our weather goes from “brown” to “spring” in a matter of days. Those hints of color turn to a green glow, and within a week or so spring has arrived. Once we get through the pollen we can enjoy it!

    My goal for this year is to simply get out and shoot more. I tend to tell myself I don’t have time, but then I feel like I spend too much time doing things that aren’t as rewarding as getting out with my camera. Oh, and I need to write about it more, too. We’ll see how that goes.
    Tom Dills recently posted… April Wallpaper

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