I pulled up to a stop light the other day, looked out the window, and saw this. Something told me instantly that I needed to take a picture of this totally banal, everyday scene on a nondescript corner where nothing is really happening.
I am so conditioned to look for balanced visual compositions in my daily environment that they often find me before I find them. When I’m actively looking for pictures, this skill I have acquired over decades of shooting is helpful. Other times, it can be maddeningly difficult to turn off when I want to take a break.
Driving can be complicated, as the windshield essentially becomes a crazy viewfinder where nothing stops moving or stays in the frame long enough. I find myself making mental snapshots of the instants that the objects in my view are aligned in a pleasing way, if only for a fraction of a second. It’s a strange, obsessive, and unavoidable game.
I like arranging things on tables. Cups, plates, silverware, whatever. Right angles. Thirds. Balance. From my point of view, there’s a right place for each item. Staying focussed in conversation can be difficult as well, if there is something visually interesting happening nearby.
Apologies to all the people that have had to put up with my distracted driving, repeat themselves, or watch me rearrange stuff. I’m just making pictures.