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Seeing the World…No, I mean, REALLY Seeing the World!

October 26, 2011

I am not talking about traveling around the world, I am talking about seeing, really seeing, where you are today, what is right there in front of you right now, in a new and different way. You know, the way you did as a child when you would sit for hours in the sandbox with no distractions and play with your trucks or your dolls. The rest of the world “fell away” and the only picture in your reality was what was right there in front of you….Or when someone comes to visit your town for the first time, and you walk them around to show them all the interesting things. You “see” your town in a new and different light. Beautiful and unique things you were now taking for granted, you see in a new way. It gives you a new appreciation for your town. For a little while, you take off your “hustle, bustle, hurry up and get from here to there” blurred vision, and you see the beauty of your surroundings for maybe the first time in years.

When I was in Northern Maine a couple of weeks ago, a brought several single-use cameras with me for the kids. My sister and I took 5 of my great nieces and nephews ages 2-9, her grandchildren, on a photography “walk-about.” Each child was given a camera with the only instructions being, “hold it with two hands, look through the little window, and when you see something you like, click the button.” For the next hour, we walked up a country road and played with the cameras. The kids photographed the trees, the leaves, the flowers, the dogs, each other, themselves, and then they moved on to the sky, and the setting sun. They were excited shouting to each other to “come look at this,” or “come take a photo of me doing that!” I loved just listening, watching and enjoying seeing the world through the eyes of these children. My dream hadn’t been to create budding photographers (although that would be an thrilling side effect), my dream had been for the children to see, really see the world….every color and shape, the tiniest of things on the ground and the big gorgeous things in the sky.

Maine kids with cameras

Intent on the World around him

Little girl with grandmother

Love

Maine kids with cameras

Aroostook County kids enjoying their World

Old fashioned children

Aroostook county, Maine kids, cameras

Seeing the World

Later that evening after dinner, all 12 of the plastic cameras were lined up ready to head to the developer. I picked each up and checked to make sure all the images had been taken on each. One camera still had 5 or 6 shots left not taken. I asked 5 year old, James, if he might like to take it home with him, finish taking the pictures in the morning, and I would pick it up from him then. And when I got home, I would send the cameras away to perform the magic. He loved the idea. It was dark out as he, his brother, and parents left for the night. About two minutes later, the door flew open, and I heard James hollaring… “Aunt Nan, Aunt Nan! Come out here!” I ran to the door. He shouted, “You have GOT to come out here and see this huge, bright moon!” It was a sight to behold and HE had noticed it!! Then he said, ‘You can have the camera back now. I finished taking the last pictures on the film!”

I went back in the house so happy he had seen, REALLY seen one of the many breathtaking and awesome beauties to behold in this world, if we just take the time to “really see!” I am in hopes that day all the kids “saw” things they might not otherwise have seen. I know I did!

The plastic cameras have now been shipped out to “do the magic.” When the photos come back that the kids shot, I will be sharing some of them here. I can’t wait to “see” them!

If you, or you and your children, are interested in doing a “photography walk-about” with me to see the world differently together, please let me know! We are never too old or too young to enjoy “seeing” this world! cncram@valley.net

Until next time,
Lots of love,
Nanette

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19 Comments leave one →
  1. October 26, 2011 1:15 am

    Awesome! This was a great idea. Looking forward to seeing the new pictures.

  2. Paryse permalink
    October 26, 2011 1:51 am

    i remember loving the pic of the kids w/cameras that you posted. the story behind that pic is absolutley awesome 🙂 I.CANNOT.WAIT. to see the photos in those cameras ❤

    • October 26, 2011 3:26 am

      Thanks, Paryse! These are incredible northern Maine kids and I can’t wait to see what they have taken for photos! It will be like Christmas morning!

  3. October 26, 2011 2:36 am

    Very well written article and very true indeed. Too often in life we can get caught up in it all and not really get to experience things.

    • October 26, 2011 3:27 am

      Very true, Cheryl! So important to slow down and “notice” the world! Thanks for following my blog! I appreciate it!

  4. Linda permalink
    October 26, 2011 11:20 am

    If everyone could have your outlook Nan….*sigh* You made me cry “happy” tears!!!

  5. October 26, 2011 12:00 pm

    Beautiful! Photos and sentiment. My kids would love to go on an expedition with you. Out of th blue, just this morning, as Jack was about to get on the bus he was asking when you could come and babysit again.?! Love from NH

    • October 26, 2011 12:40 pm

      Thanks, Jill! Let’s plan an “expedition” next time I am there! And I would love to come babysit again. That was such a special time I spent with Jack and Grace!

  6. October 26, 2011 1:01 pm

    Such great photos Nan! The kids had such fun!

  7. Anne Stuer permalink
    October 26, 2011 1:24 pm

    It was wonderful that you shared your “outlook” with your great-nieces and nephews! Your pictures of them taking pictures are priceless and I can’t wait to see what they “saw”!

  8. Paula Steingas permalink
    October 26, 2011 9:36 pm

    Nanette you are just amazing to me…what a wonderful wonderful idea to share that very special day with those beautiful children and for you to become a child again yourself and see the world thru their eyes…I can’t wait to see their pics too. I am sure they will remember that day with warmth in their hearts when they are older and have kids of their own…maybe you started a tradition in the family that needs to follow in years to come. You are a special woman and I am blessed to have you as my dear friend ❤

  9. Jenn Fletcher permalink
    October 31, 2011 12:18 am

    Very Nice Nan Loved looking at the pics and reading your blog

  10. October 31, 2011 9:04 pm

    Thanks, Jenn! I’m sure you recognize these little faces!! So happy you visited my blog! 🙂

  11. Jessica permalink
    November 3, 2011 9:51 pm

    I’m not online very often, but what a surprise to see the beautiful pictures of the kids and be able to read your thoughts. It is wonderful to have this special connection to you!

    • November 4, 2011 11:30 pm

      So happy, Jess, that you were finally able to see the photos of all the beautiful children. I had such a fun time visiting with all of you!

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