Say Cheese!!!

2

I love taking pictures.  My brother calls me a photo nazi.   He’s probably right.  But I’m pretty sure he also loves all the silly pictures I have of his kids.  I love all kinds of photography.  I love taking posed shots, random they-don’t-know-I’m-taking-a-picture-of-them shots, still life, abstract, you name it.  I love it.  Sometimes, though, I feel like to truly capture the moment the people don’t need to know that I’m taking their pictures.  As soon as someone sees a camera trained on their mug, even though they may not realize it, they start to pose.  I, myself, usually stick out my tongue.

There’s nothing like seeing the beauty in the everyday moments.  Sometimes I forget that.  Like maybe a grandfather at his granddaughter’s wedding.  I love this picture.  I just happened to catch him in the middle of a good laugh, talking with his family and just enjoying the night.

Maybe it’s the funny faces that baby’s make at random moments.  I think this picture is self-explanatory…

I don’t think these are high quality pictures by any means.  Just a few of my favorites.  There’s one main trick that you have to do to catch people in their moments of pureness.  You have to be ready.  I stood at the middle of our homemade slip-and-slide for a long time and took hundreds of pictures in order to just just one good one like this.

Yeah.  We had fun that day.  Can you tell?  We even had a little pool for the ones that were just a little too young.  As you can tell in the background, it was great entertainment for those who thought they were a little too old for the festivities 🙂

Every now and then, though, you’ll get someone’s attention and get the perfect shot…

I think she’s kinda saying, What in the hell are you looking at?  I called her name, she looked and I snapped the picture.  It was perfect timing all around.

Sometimes, though, you set things up and get the lighting just right, so you think, and maybe decide that you’re going to take an awesome picture of the piano at the church.  It’s a beautiful instrument, and I just felt that I needed to take a picture of it for my class.  I took probably 90 pictures of the piano that day.  My best shot of the day?  This:

That’s right.  That’s not the church piano.  That’s my guitar.  I was getting ready to leave for the evening and thought, Hey, why don’t I put the camera right here at the top of the head gear?  That might make a cool picture.  This picture won me a blue ribbon at the county fair.  That’s right.  I said the county fair.  Heck yeah.  Yes.  I am all that.  Okay.  Not really, but sometimes the fake confidence convinces some people.

Are you wanting to see the beauty?  To live in the little moments that God has created for us?

Are you ready?

Are you looking for the joy, or are you focusing on the negatives?

Are you willing to trying something different?  I had planned on taking awesome pictures of the piano at church.  The lighting was just right, the colors were deep and rich.  I thought I could capture that.  The I decided to experiment a little with my guitar.  I took that picture sitting on the steps, the guitar leaning up against my legs, and the camera sitting on top of the head gear.  One shot.  That’s it.  I tried something that I hadn’t intended, and I liked it.  It turned out better than I could have imagined.

Sometimes it’s the moments we’re not expecting that make the best stories.  We can set things up and do all the hard work to get something ready, and then it’s the random thing that turns out best.

My friend likes to tell the story of when he was talking to a friend about Jesus.  He’d been talking to her for hours, saying all the things a good Christian is supposed to say when another friend came by.  This friend had no idea what they’d been talking about, but stopped in front of them, said something completely ridiculous, and it was from what he said that she decided she wanted to know this Jesus guy.

We never know where those moments of joy are going to come from.  We’ve got to be ready and looking for God to show up in the everyday moments.  We’ve got to be willing to maybe try something different once in a while.  And sometimes we just have to be in the right place at the right time.  You just never know the beauty that you can find right in your front yard, surrounded by dusty corn fields and stinky cows.  Look for the beauty.

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  • Dorothy Vaughn

    Very good stuff, Julie. Love your honesty and encouragement. Love YOU actually! Keep writing…keep sharing. 🙂

  • Bethany

    Loved this one!