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rose-colored glasses

I headed out for a photo walk around my neighborhood today, wandering the cherry tree lined streets.  There is something about the act of walking even only a few blocks in search of photos that always shifts things for me.

When I go on these walks I feel like I put on my rose colored glasses and become a treasure hunter of beauty.  Today I find it in cherry blossoms that have fallen from the tree and their soft delicate petals.

No matter what else is going, when I make this space to wander, take pictures and look for beauty, it re-energizes me like nothing else does.   It invites me to slow down, to engage with the light and the natural world around me.  This practice of seeking beauty with my camera has been a lifeline from darkness to light.

When I first began exploring photography I was going through some drastic life changes.  I knew the way I had been living wasn’t working for me anymore.  I was living for everyone else and not for myself.

So I reverted into a cocoon for a while, craving even more time alone than my usual introvert self needed.  I wanted to be alone and figure out who I was separate from all the outside perceptions.

I went in search.  I didn’t know how to find what I needed or even that photography would lead me there.  It was just something I could do in which there was peaceful yet creative time alone.  I knew that was the first clue to finding my way back to myself and to happiness, simply because of the way it made me feel.

I went in search of beauty and when you go in search of beauty, you find it.

At times it seems like we aren’t supposed to tell our stories with rose colored glasses, muting out the rough in favor of the radiant, the flowery, the beautiful.  Yet looking for the positive, for little bits of beauty, isn’t denying that life has rough patches: that there are broken branches or muddy puddles around those gorgeous pink blossoms.  Rather, it is a way to focus on what is positive even if times are rough (especially when they are).  That doesn’t mean denying the rough patches, but rather using photography as a tool to engage with the world around us in a way that lifts us up. 

Even these years later, I’m doing the same thing I did when this creative journey began, seeking bits of beauty.

You could say that seeing the world through rose-colored glasses is what saved and transformed my life. Seeing the beauty around me helped me find my way back to happiness again and to discover the beauty within me by documenting the beauty around me.

Will you join me today in documenting some of the beauty around you?  Let’s put on our rose-colored glasses and go treasure hunting for beauty.  Be it a flower petal, a person you love, or the beauty you see in yourself today?

Image and words by guest blogger Vivienne McMaster.

Reader Comments (13)

I absolutely love this post. Thank you.♥ When things get rough for me at home, or in my head; when I feel like I cannot even process anything anymore, and my creative wants are all tangled up with the responsibilities that I don't know what to do, I know it's time to 'get out' - to go out there and engage in the light outside, to seek beauty in the 'little' things; to be with nature. Sometimes I go out just to mingle with people going about their daily thing (even if I don't know them), and I don't feel so alone. I feel grounded. I feel 'we are all in this together' and somehow we are all seeking joy and beauty and peace. But there is nothing quite like soaking it all up with nature. Nature is so nourishing. I love your photo and your words.
Hi have put into words my thoughts on photography. I've just started taking self portraits and I am amazed at how doing a jump/twirl shot can bring some lightness on a dark day :)
May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterFiona
You've put my thoughts into words here - so perfectly. Me too - I've found that my seeking and focusing on beauty - has enabled a positive and happy outlook on life. Here's one of my more abstract...but 'happy' images:
May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMarcie
beautiful words and image!
here's a little bit of beauty in my world today
May 16, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermarina
Love this post! Glad to see you as the guest shutter sister today. Here's a selfie...because I learned to see the beauty within with your classes....and it changed my whole world view. Picking up a camera during the difficult times can be incredibly transforming.
May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHeather
I took this photo yesterday. I walk past this plant every day and barely notice it. Getting up close and personal just blows me away with the intricacies of life on a small scale.
May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSonya
What a wonderful post! Here's my beautiful and some words about staving off comparison.
May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnna
I loved your post. It says exactly what photography means to me: a way to seek out beauty, even in the ordinary.
May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSandee
Oh Jennifer, Fiona, Marcie, Marina, Heather, Sonya, Anna and Sandee...your images and words have me in total awe. Thank you so much for sharing the beauty in your world with us. You totally made my day.

I'm so glad that you all so relate to how much just taking a moment to seek out beauty can lift us up.
May 16, 2012 | Unregistered Commentervivienne
Looking at so many beautiful images makes me more aware of the natural beauty in the world. I fell in love with some images of peonies and asked for a bouquet on mother's day. Aren't they lovely?
May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGabriele
You have written such a beautiful and poignant post. I can truly relate.

In fact, today not only did I seek out beauty in the ordinary (food and flowers from my adult son) but I chose to write a postcard to my mother who left this earth several years ago. They go hand in hand.
May 16, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDiane M. Schuller
This is a lovely post. I recently returned from Thailand, where I found beauty in abundance.

Here are some of my favorite images:
May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPetinaHope
My thoughts exactly. I appreciate your kindred spirit! (See below)
May 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLea

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