Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Better than chocolate bunnies . . .

A had a nice surprise when I looked back over my Easter Sunday photographs.  Sometimes in the hustle and bustle of the business part of photographing, my own personal shots get pushed on the back burner.  After a wonderful Easter celebration, I found myself quickly back to the projects that demanded my attention and not on the family and church photos.

Easter was rushed.  It was a beautiful day and the church was more flowered and festive than anything I could imagine and every child there looked like they should be starring in a big box office hit, and the service was joyous and prayerful and everything was just about perfect; but still, it was rushed.  I knew I was releasing the shutter over and over all of the day, but I wasn't thinking much about what I was doing.  I'll have to say I was on a bit of an automatic pilot mode.

Sometimes when I have taken photos without a great deal of thought, I don't find myself as anxious to view them as I usually am.  I think that's how I was after Easter.  But - as you surely know by now - I can leave the laundry undone and the den undusted, but I will never leave a memory card in a camera for long before I connect to my computer and set those images free!  And so I did.  I expected the usual, the colorful outfits on the joyful children and smiles as they searched for eggs and such.  I had those, to be sure, and they made me smile.

My biggest smiles, though, came from some surprises.  I few photos sent me immediately back to the moment they captured and reminded me again that there is magic in still photography.  There is nothing particular outstanding about these shots.  They are not photos where I spent a great deal of time on the settings, or analyzing the lights.  They did not come out of any preplanning.  These few favorites just did what I love best about photographs - they instantly transported me to another place - back to Easter morning, surrounded by loved ones in a gorgeous building.  They tell their own stories, and that's what I really dig.  Pictures telling stories . . . ah.

 . . . loved the sun flare here and looking out at the people from the safety and sacredness of the church

 . . . just loved seeing these big men walking into church with the intent of choirboys

. . . it's always good to capture the waiting and wondering and watching

          . . . . this one went quickly to the top of my all time favorite photos - again, not for it's technical perfection but for the story that it tells me, the feelings it evokes, the way I can look at this sweet lady's head and know so very very much.  She is nearing 98 and quite independent and she has always been a wearer of fancy hats.  The way she is praying there with the same bowed head of the choir members down in front, just seems like an Easter miracle!  This photo is priceless to me.  

. . . and this is the spot that invites the sun in  for just a bit of the service.  I  love it when I notice that the sun is dancing around on their hair and upon their books.

. . . I could eat this up - he's just spotted his grandmother in a pew in the back.  Watch his face . . . this is love.

. . . always fun to get another perspective.

. . . and again.

. . . another face.  So, so sweet.

I think you can tell the story here . . . it's time to hunt some eggs!

This was outside, towards the end of the hunt.  I had to go back into the church to get my camera bag and I heard one more story, one more message from the day . . . 

There was something meaningful for me about this sight.  Outside it was very exciting, but loud and cacophonous.  There were happy voices and shrieks everywhere.  When I re-entered the church, this quiet corner reminded me that this quiet, prayerful place is always here.  It's always the same.  It always offers us the same solace, the same escape from the crazy outside world.  It told the story of its sturdiness, the way this safe place is always and forever right here.  It's always waiting on folks from the outside to take a moment and come in for rest and refreshment and renewal.  It's just here, waiting, doing what it does.

Happy Easter.  

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