Spring Time

A funny thing has happened to me this Spring. Funny meaning ‘odd’ or ‘strange’. I’ve struggled to get engaged with the season – in general and photographically.

Daffoddils on the kitchen windowcill on a wet day

Daffodils on the kitchen window cill on a wet day

Damson Plum blossom in our garden

Damson Plum blossom in our garden

It’s a mixture of ‘I’ve seen it all before’, and a distinct failure to feel inspired. I could make all sorts of excuses. For a start, I could blame the weather: we had a spell of severe pollution, and there have been days of grey leaden skies. But blaming the weather is such a weak excuse. Slightly more valid is the fact that we’ve been de-cluttering the house, starting to decorate, working in the garden. I’ve felt pressured to get things done and when we are pressured in any way, creativity gets squeezed out.

I wrote about this over on my other blog –iSighting – in ‘An Untroubled Mind’. If you haven’t discovered iSighting yet, do take a look. I won’t gone on with further excuses – we make time for the things we really want to do. And the bottom line really has been that I’ve run out of ideas, locally.

The garden is the same garden we’ve lived in for over thirty years, the neighbourhood is the same neighbourhood, the local walks are the same local walks. I know the trees, the bushes. I could tell you exactly which ones I’ve photographed. Locally, I’m bored.

IMG_5941_wpFinally yesterday we got out for the day: down to London and out to Greenwich to see a fantastic exhibition of the Seascapes of J M W Turner. What an amazing privilege to see so many famous images all in one vast space.

Afterwards we walked up to the Greenwich Observatory and a little beyond. A place full of memories because a week ago the long avenue just south of the Observatory was packed with competitors lining up to start the London Marathon. And that took me back to the six occasions some years back when I lined up there to start one of the greatest of sporting events: my brain swirling with excitement and natural anxiety at the challenge ahead.

The view north over the Greenwich Naval College to Canary Wharf

The view north over the Greenwich Naval College to Canary Wharf

I’d forgotten how extraordinary the view northwards from the Observatory over the Canary Wharf area of London really is. The camera started clicking.

And we found some trees. Not the boring local trees, but new ones. Cherry in full bloom.

_DS78848_wpAnd other trees bursting with new growth, and whose names escape me.

_DS78851_wpCreativity had come back. All it needed was a change of scene. A day when the brain was cleared of other concerns because it couldn’t sort through papers, wield a paint brush or lay paving in the garden. The mind for a day was untroubled, and I felt good.

Remember to click on any image in today’s post to see a higher quality enlargement.


About LensScaper

Hi - I'm a UK-based photographer who started out 45+ years ago as a lover of landscapes, inspired by my love of outdoor pursuits: skiing, walking and climbing. Now retired, I seldom leave home without a camera and I find images in unexpected places and from different genres. I work on the premise that Photography is Art and that creativity is dependent on the cultivation of 'A Seeing Eye'. I'm not averse to manipulating images to produce derivatives that may sometimes be far removed from the original.
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19 Responses to Spring Time

  1. oneowner says:

    I, for one, am glad you got your mojo back, Andy. Nice shots, especially the last. We arr still struggling to overcome winter but are just starting to see signs of spring.

    • LensScaper says:

      Sounds like winter is proving stubbornly reluctant to loosen its hold for you. A few warm days has seen Spring advance rather rapidly here, but we are still getting overnight frosts.

  2. Lovely shots Andy. Stress certainly does squeeze your creativity out and a change of scenery can do wonders. I’m glad you got your enthusiasm back 🙂

  3. Chillbrook says:

    I taught in Greenwich Andy and loved it. The view to Canary Wharf is a wonderful one. I’m happy the visit to the exhibition had such a profound effect on your creativity.

  4. Very nice work Andy! The light on the daffodil shot is lovely.

  5. Wow, Andy, these images are gorgeous. The editing is wonderful. I’ve missed your images. I’m back finally. I have some catching up to do here. 🙂 These really are exciting images for me.

    • LensScaper says:

      Hi George. Thanks for stopping by. I’ve been visiting your blog but I can’t see how to comment on any of your work now. Have you moved to a template without a comment feature?

  6. seekraz says:

    Nice piece of writing, Andy…resonates with me…about the busy mind and creativity nowhere to be found…I’m in a similar place right now and am yearning for the relief that only time will bring. I hope you find what you need in the fleeting Spring…as it will be gone too soon.

  7. Len says:

    I feel your lack of creativity at home Andy. Been there done that syndrome. That is why I travel so much. I listen to a lot of podcasts and several of them and their advice is to get in front of more interesting subjects to fire up the creativity. From these images, it worked for you.

  8. Jim Nix says:

    I shot in that area once and it was spectacular – I stood on that hill at Greenwich, shot at the University, and then took the tunnel under the Thames and made it over to Canary Wharf – so awesome! great shots, you really make me want to go back!

    • LensScaper says:

      It’s a fantastic area to explore. Still developing. I must stop off in the Canary Wharf area one day. The DLR runs straight through it and my eye is seeing images everywhere! London is such a vibrant space.

  9. Meanderer says:

    I know exactly what you mean with regard to lack of inspiration. I have felt that from time to time as I wonder how I might photograph familiar subjects again this year. I find a change of scene works wonders. Also, photographing the same subject but in a different way helps.

    I really like your photo of the daffodils here. I love the light and the out of focus Natural backdrop through the window – really lovely.

    How wonderful to have seen the Turner exhibition. Looks like unless I try and make it tomorrow, I’ve missed that one.

    • LensScaper says:

      We all have spells like this, and getting away from the usual is the best way to find inspiration. Good weather of course helps. I didn’t have to move far to shoot the Daffodils!
      Sadly I think you will have missed Turner. We left it to the last week. Next on the agenda is Matisse at Tate Modern. Mustn’t miss that, it’s getting some great reviews. And there’s David Bailey at the NPG. London is such a fantastic venue for high quality exhibitions.

  10. ShimonZ says:

    Very good to share your excitement, Andy, and the products of your inspiration… Yes, it is good to have a change of scenery now and then, if just to wake up the eyes. These were some very beautiful shots.

  11. Awesome set, Andy, I really really enjoyed it!!! We’re seeing spring up here as well and I feel a bit the same as you have… and I am happy to say that the bright and vibrant skies are opening up my creative channels too!! Best wishes for a great spring this year, my friend!

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