Originally from Northern England, Alan Norsworthy has been a photographer since the late 1960's.

He moved to Canada in 1973 and has made Guelph Ontario his home for the last 24 years.

" I remember visiting the CN Tower in the early 70's and the guide said that as far as you could see in any direction is the best farmland in Canada. That comment echoes down the years as I watch subdivisions eat up the landscape."

The area around Guelph offers up a plethora of rural images which Alan captures with his artistic vision. His work covers everything from macro photographs of flowers, sweeping landscapes, historic buildings and old abandoned farms in both colour and Black and White.

"This is where I find my inspiration, I have a need to show people the beauty I see as I walk the woods and fields of Southern Ontario"

Sunday, July 21, 2013

You will be Assimilated - Grape Ivy Study

You will be Assimilated - Grape Ivy Study
Originally uploaded by Alan Norsworthy

“God is in the details”
~ Mies van der Rohe

This phrase should have come from a photographer, not an architect. However Mies van der Rohe was a stickler for detail, concerned about everything. For example he designed the plaque, the wording and the font for the Toronto Dominion Centre in Toronto, talk about details!

What he meant was, whatever you choose to do it should be done thoroughly.

More common is the phrase “The Devil is in the details” meaning, ignore the details at your peril.

So how does this affect what we as photographers produce?
I am on a journey to free and open up my mind to the opportunities of an ever flowing, ever changing world.

To become a Flâneur.

The literal translation is a person who is a "stroller", "lounger", "saunterer", or "loafer" but which later became a description for an artist-poet.

We need to relax;
Forget about how much time we have available on any given day.
Forget about work
Forget about the weather
Forget about where you are going or what you hope you will find when you arrive.

If we go about our hobby / profession worrying about the details concentrating on one thing we miss the myriad of possibilities that float by, unseen and unheeded. We have blinkered ourselves.

So try this; don’t go out with a specific destination or subject in mind go out with the intention of letting the subject come to you.

Yesterday was one such day, a threatening sky and rain soaked trails caused us to change venues at the last minute, an easy decision when you are a “Flaneur”.

Not so easy if you have set your sights on a particular place, time or subject.

We chose the Arboretum over the open fields simply because the paths were dryer and there was shelter close by in case the weather turned against us nothing to do with photography. Once there we strolled the trails, it didn’t take long for a subject to find us.
Not the wind and rain swept vista’s but the tiny world of macro or close up photography. Rain on leaves, snails, insects, dragonflies, the way plants grow and climb.
There, in the details we had our subjects ...

They found us, we were simply receptive and open minded

So what did I learn from this?

As photographers we need to journey with an open mind but be aware that the details of what you choose to photograph can make or break the image be it a panoramic vista or a tendril of a plant.

So there you have it, one minute I say “forget about the details and wander” and in the next breath “don’t forget about the details”!

Well yes, let me explain;

As you wander with your open mind receptive to a subject, do not blinker your thoughts with details, let it all flow slowly by and be aware of possibilities.
However when the moment comes and your subject appears then the details become important ....

........ see? God may be in the details but the Devil is in the timing....

Out beyond ideas of rightdoing and wrongdoing, there is a field. I will meet you there. ~Rumi


Doug England said...

Thoughtful post Alan.

Anonymous said...

I just visited your website. How wonderful, inspiring, and thoughtful. "Let the subjest come to you" of course. As artists many struggle with this. There is such a fine line between searching, looking, tension, seeking, planning, preconceived visions or feelings in your head compared to being observant, patient, grateful, mindful, opening your heart and mind. We are so "attached to outcome". I think if you can let go of this attachment, it frees our minds and hearts to be open, intuitive, receptive and the "outcome" will happen if it is meant to happen in that moment or perhaps at some other moment in time.
Thank you for provoking these thoughts.