Share, Listen, Think

Take A Picture With Your Mind

In Creative Living, Nature on November 8, 2015 at 1:46 pm

By Heila Rogers


Photo by Deborah Briggs

My mom was a preschool, kindergarten or first grade teacher for years. When little kids would get wiggly while waiting in line for the bathrooms or lunch, she would tell them, “Okay boys and girls, I want you to listen. Put an elephant in your mind.” They’d all grow quiet and gape with their minds busy. She’d wait a moment, then say, “Now, make it pink!” And so on.

It’s no wonder I grew up having a big imagination. She was also our full-time mom/teacher for even more years.

I also remember her using the phrase above, when we were on one of many driving trips as a family.

We didn’t grow up with cell phones or personal cameras. (I remember my first insta-matic camera. It was the kind with detachable cube flashbulbs. Only 12 photos per roll of film.)

So if our film ran out or we didn’t have a camera, and were looking at something especially beautiful, something that we wanted to remember, my mom would say:

“Take a picture with your mind!”

And we would.

We’d gaze and notice detail. We’d commit to memory smells, colors and textures.

We’d let the beauty … speak to us.

Our traveling, viewing experience was enriched by this heightened interaction with our surroundings.

Don’t get me wrong, I love photos, email, and online sharing, etc. too.

But this thrill of interaction, of absorbing, might be the reason folks seem to be swinging back more toward “analog” nowadays.

Laurel - snowdonia

Snowdonia/ Photo by Laurel Greszler

To be able to touch, smell, and really BE in a place (and with people), instead of with our noses attached to screens too much while the world goes on around us, without us.

Not only can we connect with others more, when we look around more closely, but we feel more connected to beautiful scenery or something interesting in a museum. A pile of autumn leaves on the ground can enrich our spirit somehow.

Thanks, Mom.



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