How Photography Helps Me Live Better

Wednesday, August 31st, 2011

Niagara Falls 059 We’re constantly told to keep things in perspective, to maintain perspective, as if there is one true way in which to view the world and our lives in it. I think that’s dangerously limiting. Holding tight to perspective can prevent happiness and, I believe, adds to continued intolerance.

I love photography because it forces me to practice looking at life from different perspectives.

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Photography teaches me to shift from big picture to small and back again. A step to the left creates a completely new picture, complete with shadows and subtleties that could never be fully appreciated if that small step to the side hadn’t been taken. Hunting for the right picture teaches me flexibility and reminds me that there is always another angle from which the world can be seen.

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A change in perspective, a look at life through a new lens, fosters understanding, empathy, and then compassion. It promotes conversation and compromise. It guarantees us endless options for finding happiness and beauty in every single moment of this very real and sometimes hard life.

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What helps you shift perspective?

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  1. maman says:

    Oh!!! You are near where I grew up. Be sure to stop in Lockport, NY where the Erie Canal was finished!

  2. Nicole says:

    This post is simply wonderful. Your words intermixed with the changing views of the same falls are excellent. My mind works very much like this post and I essentially “take pictures” of situations to help me shift my perspective. I love the falls, though. Water always calms me so this will stick with me for. Thank you.

  3. Rachel says:

    What beautiful pictures! Thanks for the great post.

  4. Kelly says:

    Great pics and post. I am always the one taking pictures everywhere I go, and family always tells me to put it away and enjoy it then and now. But I agree with you and if I didn’t take the pics to remember, who would?

    • Miss Britt says:

      I really do have to make a point of putting the camera down sometimes, and I hate to admit but it IS a totally different experience when I’m not trying to capture it. Don’t tell anyone I said that though. ;-)

  5. Vicki...from Oklahoma says:

    Thank you for putting all of this into words. It’s exactly the way I feel about photography but had just never made the connection in terms of perspectives! Keep writing these great blog entries!

  6. the muskrat says:

    Drugs and alcohol help me shift perspective!

  7. daniel says:

    My kids.

    not enoughcoffee to give a better reply

  8. Love it Britt! The pics are awesome and so are the words. Changes in perspective and angle can make all the difference in the world, in life AND in photography. To get a new perspective, sometimes I just need to have another pair of eyes look at a situation, or maybe even sleep on it.
    Thanks for sharing with us!
    Bernice
    Is your life a roller coaster ride?

  9. Megan says:

    Pretty! Excellent metaphor and very true.

  10. Lisa says:

    Yes, exactly this.

  11. martymankins says:

    Absolute wonderful pics of Niagara Falls. My wife wants to go there soon.

    And yes, taking photos does bring a different perspective to many visuals in life. For me, bringing back memories of a wonderful vacation takes all the stress and crap deal with on a regular basis away for that moment of viewing.

  12. Lesley P. says:

    These pictures are beautiful, especially the second one.

  13. Nanna says:

    The last one got to me, for some reason. I love it, baby. All of it.

  14. damn fine post, britt. so very true.
    also, these images are wonderful, but for some reason i am in love with that last one. such a cool shot!

  15. Penbleth says:

    These are fantastic.

  16. [...] lost in the details and your experience is richer for having done so. (Miss Britt sums it up nicely here.) As fast as they're growing, there are still times my boys seem very [...]

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