November 21, 2011

Life's Golden Moments

When we were babies, our parents stuck a crayon in our chubby little hands and watched with pride and glee as we scribbled our earliest artwork. Throughout childhood, we went through an evolution of artistic styles, mastering crayons, markers and paint. We went through countless stacks of blank paper and a quarter-ton of line-drawing books with one underlying objective firmly planted in our minds: we must add color. And when we did, miraculously we found that color could make us happy!
 
Around age eight I was given a set of Crayola crayons - 120 of them, I think it was - and that set provided me with literally years of enjoyment. When I created an art piece, adding color to the paper made me elated, and the more saturation and depth I added, the more I could imagine the scene in real life. Of all the colors, I think my favorites were the metallic ones: copper, gold and silver. If my picture contained treasure or coins, then a good filling in with my metallic Crayolas made me feel instantly richer.
 
At some point in my early teens, my recreational art started leaning more toward line drawing than to coloring or painting. Maybe the line drawings were closer to the reality of life and machines and details and responsibilities that were being thrust upon me. Maybe my time was more being spent in a classroom, where I could practice my line drawing skills in the margin of my writing composition books. (To carry my childhood box of 120 crayons around me and use them in math class would have been inappropriate on many levels.)
 
I guess all of the above is a natural progression. But what I realized, many years later, is that I still love color, and that being around vivid hues and shimmering metallics in a rainbow of shades makes me feel happy and calm. While I do have a strong taste for bold colors in art and everyday objects, I have developed a personal and almost spiritual appreciation for times when I stumble upon deep, vivid color and reflection or translucence in nature. From plants and flowers that put my 120-crayon-set to shame, to natural tricks of light in the morning mist or evening sunset, I can't help myself from just stopping what I'm doing, and soaking in the moment.
 
Today's Pic of the Day is a little reminder for me of the simple days of childhood, when the details really didn't matter, and creating a little color, warmth and shine were enough to make us happy.

Comments:

Today's pic was shot with a Nikon D70 and Nikkor 70 - 300mm zoom at f/5.6, 1/200 second exposure. Shot at sunset as the tide was going out on Edisto Beach, South Carolina.

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