Sunday, July 14, 2013

What goes into creation...



The above photo was taken on a fine spring day in Hechingen, Germany sometime in 2008.


The above photo was modified using Creative Cloud, Photoshop, and Lightroom...


Today's post is going to be somewhat philosophical.  It may not even belong on this travel blog, since it's not so much about travel as it is about what goes into creation.  It cost me nothing to take the above photo...  or did it?  How much is that first photo, which fathered the second photo, actually worth?

I couldn't take that photo today.  It would be impossible.  I happened to create that image one day when I happened to live in Germany and had the means to get to Hohenzollern Castle.  What events led up to my decision to snap that picture?

If you think about it, there were many things that went into that photo.... Years of preparation, really.  If I sat down to think about it, I could come up with a long chain of events stretching years in the past that went into that photo.  

Think about what went into the making of each and every person, place, thing, or idea on the planet.  A lot of people are responsible for the fact that I exist.  A lot of people went into the making of you, too.  If just one of the people of my past hadn't taken specific actions, I would not be who I am and likely wouldn't be where I am...  I might not have ever met or married Bill and perhaps would never have gone to Germany where I saw that beautiful castle rising majestically on a hilltop.

I met my husband by chance in a chatroom back in 1999.  He had just split up from his ex wife and I had just started graduate school.  We were both lonely and living in new cities.  We chatted for a year and a half before we met in person... again, kind of by chance, because the Army sent Bill to Columbia, South Carolina on business and I happened to live there at the time.

We married in 2002 and in 2007, some people in the Army decided to send us to Germany.  Taxpayers paid for our tickets to Germany.  My husband heard about Hohenzollern from a co-worker who had been there and thought it was a neat place.  We happened to live in a location near the castle, which made it easy for us to drive there.

Hohenzollern Castle was built centuries ago and rebuilt and modified when it fell into disrepair.  If not for the efforts of many people over many years, that castle would not have been available for me to photograph.    

It cost money to gas up the car for the drive to Hohenzollern and money to park there so we could explore the castle grounds.  The gas came from somewhere.  If we had not had access to the gas or the money to pay for the gas, we could not have gone to Hohenzollern and I wouldn't have taken that photo.  We paid admission to walk around at the top of the mountain... money that came from somewhere, a reward for someone's hard work.  We were rewarded by the sights of castle grounds in Germany, which I managed to capture with a cheap digital camera powered by batteries made by unknown hands in an unknown factory somewhere.

My husband paid for the camera I used to snap this shot, which was made by unknown people in a factory somewhere in the Orient.  I stored this image on several computers, again made by people I don't know in another country.  

Last night, I decided to subscribe to Adobe Creative Cloud, which provided the software I used to enhance that photo.  The subscription will cost me about $50 a month and I'm just playing around with it now, learning how to use it.  I am changing with this new knowledge and the new experiences I'm getting because I'm exposing myself to these new tools.  

A whole lot of people went into the making of that photo...  Yes, I am the one who took it, but I have many people to thank for the fact that I was able to take it.  So what is that photo worth?  Was taking that photo worth the effort?  I think so...  It's leading to new things and another chain of events that will affect creation.

Just something that crossed my mind this Sunday afternoon...    

2 comments:

  1. It is amazing to ponder both the deliberate acts and sheer chance that enter into so many aspects of our lives. If the restroom attack had not happened, I'd probably be attending UC Davis and my family would probably still be living in that area. My mom would probably still be an assistant superintendent for a school district rather than a univeristy professor. If my paternal grandmother's smart genes hadn't overpowered my grandfather's neanderthal genes, my dad might be cleaning restrooms and sweeping floors at Walmart rather than attempting to cure leukemia and lymphoma. (I'm not putting down any honest work, though I feel sorry for someone who has to make do with Walmart's substandard wages.)

    My brother is an NCAA Div I pitcher. he never would have gottn the opportunity to pitch (he never pitched in Little League) if his freshman team hadn't had a game where they went through every pitcher and had to start putting random plyaers in at pitcher. It ended up he culd throw strikes and had a nasty curve that no one knew anything about. It won't affect him in terms of his career, as he can't go pro and won't even try but it got him a full ride at a beautiful private university right on the ocean. In a sense it will impact his career, as it's a prestigious enough institution that a 4.0 there with a decent MCAT and his ability to interview well will probably get him admission to the medical school of his choice.

    Fate is both fickle and weird.

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    Replies
    1. Yup. If my mom had it her way, I never would have been born. And then you wouldn't be reading this blog... or any of the others...

      And Bill might very well be a single workaholic instead of being forced to take me on trips. ;-)

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