A couple weeks ago I posted about a self-assigned photography project

cemetary arcAfter I left both the Food & Light and Mexico City workshops, my teachers and mentors from both events urged all of us in attendance to challenge ourselves, push ourselves, and assign ourselves projects.

So when Jess asked if there was any interest in doing a photography project that she assigned, I said sure!

The project was extremely open-ended: Ground Level

Hmmm.

I was really stumped about what I wanted to capture.

Ground level.

Hmmm.

I pondered it but nothing was coming to me.

Then a couple days ago I was walking with Skylar and came across broken glass

Broken glass on groundVery Ground Level in the most literal interpretation

The sun was reflecting from the glass and it was shimmering and sparkling and I had a teaching moment explaining about glass: it’s sharp, we don’t touch it, why it was broken and fragments were on the grass, what crime is, why someone would break another person’s car windows.

The broken glass was a tool in that moment.

All this while the sun was shining on our backs in a very comforting way that happens on those perfect, crisp fall days.

Skylar crouching on the sidewalk

Unfortunately, I know these images are only made possible because another person had the misfortune of having their car windows broken, which saddens me.

But on the bright side, the start of fall, walking with my little girl after school, the sun shining, being outside, helping her understand some bigger concepts, and just soaking up life together all felt ground level and back-to-basics.

And that was a gift from this self-assignment.  Or Jess‘ from assignment.

Broken glass on ground

So even though the broken glass is a result of misfortune, at the moment I took these pictures, I felt very blessed to be with my daughter and just be.

As I mentioned previously, one of the messages in the event I attended this week was that people don’t want pictures; they want memories of how they felt when the pictures were taken.

As I look at these pictures a week later, I remember exactly how I felt.

So this self-assignment was successful in that sense.

Broken glass on groundIf you look closely, you can sort of make out my reflection in the lower right hand corner

And I think I have a budding photographer on my hands.

Imaginary camera, squatting down, making sure she gets.the.shot.  <–Monkey see, monkey do

Skylar crouching on the sidewalkGround Level at it’s finest

Questions:

1. What’s the last project, goal, or challenge you gave yourself? Or that someone else gave you?  What did you learn?

Not just about photography, but about anything.

The last project I gave myself was to meet other like-minded professionals and I checked that off my list.  Foot in the door and starting somewhere, that’s all I can ask for at this point.

Another project was to increase my running speed just by a tiny bit.  After a month, a run that used to take me about 27 minutes now takes 24.  I made progress.  (I don’t time myself scientifically at all.  I look at my microwave clock when I leave the house and check it when I get back)  Plus, I feel faster, so the self-assigned project was a success.

Another self-challenge is to get more sleep.  I get a fail on that one.   Too much to do, and I cut out sleep before I cut out the other things I want or need to accomplish.   But I’m working on it.

2. Weekend plans?

Not sure what we’re up to yet.  Hopefully some family time, some cooking time, and whatever else happens, I’ll just go with the flow.

And now, I need to have some chocolate.  

White Chocolate Cookies & Cream Fudge is calling my name

White Chocolate Cookies & Cream FudgeLong day, long week = chocolate time

P.S. Thanks for the Case of Odwalla Bars Giveaway entries.   Keep them coming!

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