There aren’t many flowers in the garden at the moment so I tend to focus my attention on the few there are and concentrate on challenging myself to get a good photo in the unpredictable winter weather. A few days ago I decided to photograph the same two azaleas from a range of different angles to see which one worked best in the dim light of a murky afternoon. Contrary to my assumptions, the diffused light actually worked in my favour as there were no washed out areas and no unwanted shadows intruding. However, it also meant there was no ‘natural’ direction to take the shot from as there was no distinct source of light.
Instead I persevered and photographed them from above, below, straight on, at an angle and from every side. Sometimes I made the larger of the two the focal point, with the smaller one at the side setting it in context, and at others I gave the smaller flower greater prominence, with the larger one providing a lovely frame for it. To do this well I set aside all of my preconceptions about what a good photo should look like and simply explored the possibilities. I enjoyed the process immensely as I removed any expectations from the results and tried out different views of the same two delicate flowers with an open mind as to what the outcome would be. Surprisingly, I didn’t come up with just one good photo. There were several that really stood out and each of them was distinctly different to the others. By approaching my task lightly and leaving aside my expectations I generated a far greater range of usable options.
It made me think that this same approach is one that can be applied to looking at any situation in our life, solving a problem, or making a decision. Eliminating our assumptions, removing rigid expectations of the outcomes, and looking at the difficulty from a range of different viewpoints helps us to generate a much broader range of possibilities and solutions. Why not try it: the results may be surprising.
What unexpected results have you had from looking at a situation from differnt angles?
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