It is truly my pleasure to write these blog posts, but there are times when the backlog of ideas for new posts has been depleted, and I wonder if I’ll find anything worthwhile to share ever again.  It amazes me as much as anyone that I’ve posted almost every day since April of 2009.

At first, I wanted to document in photos and words the little seasonal changes I observed over the course of a year in my ordinary life in Seattle.  Then, writing my blog became a habit of sorts.  I still walk through my life on alert, always on the lookout for possible ideas for blog posts.  Sometimes I start with a poem or quote I’ve discovered in my reading, and then try to find an image to illustrate that idea.  Sometimes I start with an image, a photograph I want to share but have to find some words to go with it.  I don’t try to write long essays or post too many photos in one blog post.  Rather, each day focuses on the pleasures of one small idea or image.

I am most comfortable when I have a small backlog of ideas, but I try not to get too stressed if my well is running dry.  Right now, for example, I’m thinking ahead to late February/early March when I will be out of town for a week.  Can I prepare enough posts in advance to have something ready to publish each day of my absence?  I worry about this, but then something happens and invariably all turns out okay.

Like the neighborhood walk I took yesterday with my camera.  I didn’t know what would strike my eye, but it turns out I was almost overwhelmed with lovely images.  Suddenly, nature seems to be stirring out of its winter dormancy, and I’m seeing all sorts of things going on.  I took photo after photo, and after uploading them, I’ve mentally sorted them into themes for a week’s worth of blog posts!

It’s funny how I can walk the same streets day after day and not see anything special.  And then a new day, and it’s like I’ve got some kind of special glasses on that allow me to see with fresh eyes.  I’m still learning that I have to trust the ebb and flow of my creative life.  And that the Universe will provide if I am open to it.

I’ll end with three photos from my recent neighborhood walk — images that I like but can’t figure out how to incorporate into a full blog post.  Enjoy!

Thorns on the bark of these trees

I like the pattern of these buds standing all in a row.

New growth cutting through old leaf

Thorned Glory

January 5, 2010

Thorns arranged like a sunburst

Detail of cactus, Volunteer Park Conservatory

Thorns, like buttons down the seam of a cactus

Detail of cactus, Volunteer Park Conservatory

Thorned cactus

I was totally captivated by the structured symmetry of the plants in the Cactus Room at the Volunteer Park Conservatory.  There is so much beauty in the rhythmic patterns of thorns on the various cacti.

Lately I’ve been watching the first seasons of Project Runway on DVD, and while I was busy photographing these unusual cacti, I couldn’t help but imagine how fashion designers could find inspiration by visiting this room at the Volunteer Park Conservatory.