Failing to See True Beauty

Have you ever taken a photo and been frustrated with it because it cannot capture the immense beauty of what is in front of you at the moment; only to discover that months later that same photo brings a small portion of that awe back to you and equips you to step back into the moment?  You can share what was before you and describe something so powerful without words.

I’m a wanderer, community builder and missionary; my deepest passion is sharing life, goodness and beauty through my camera.  When I can’t adequately photograph what my eyes see, I have to step back, meditate on the moment and work with the photo for weeks or months, in some cases years later.  (So much for instant gratification!)  Beauty sticks with us in surprising ways, and sometimes you can’t see its core until time has passed, and then you remember.

One of my favorite films is The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, because there’s a scene that has haunted me since the first time I saw it.  A photographer happens upon a moment he’s been anticipating, turns to Walter and says, “Beautiful things don’t ask for attention.”   

Stop and think about that because as a photographer I really need to consider this: What about the majestic mountain, standing thousands of meters above its surroundings…the ice crystals forming on a frozen lake… a waterfall pounding against rocks…the fire in the sky as night falls?   

My list could continue as I consider the beauty I have seen with my own eyes.  

This world is full of beauty but when my eyes are not open, the most beautiful things are easily overlooked.  Much like the photos that can’t do justice to what is before our eyes, could it be that we should begin to look at the deeper beauty?  That mountain didn’t just appear for our viewing pleasure and its not screaming “look at me, look at me”. Can you hear it say “I reflect the majesty of my creator”?  The ice crystals, can you hear them say, “we are all different, but in this community we are beautiful together” The waterfall says to the rocks, “I will continue to pour onto you, but you will not be moved, you are strong”.  That burning sky closes the day with promise that light will overcome the imminent darkness.  

(Photos courtesy of Lauren Pupillo)

Today, consider the world around you.  You might not be in a place full of serene nature (I moved from a cabin in the woods to an urban wonderland; I get it) but there is beauty everywhere, and it doesn’t always look the way we expect it to.  An elderly couple walking hand in hand, a song that stills your soul, an image drawn by a child.  These are moments we happen upon every day, and they are all beautiful and meant to be shared.  

What have you observed today that is beautiful?

 

Lauren Pupillo | go.laurenpupillo.com/blog

 

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