Diving into Beyond Layers again. For day 29 the theme was Being Brave. Firstly, Kim challenged us to remember / write down a brave moment in our lives. Don't know about big and brave things, but thinking about this made some little things surface.
This is such a silly and clichéd thing to be telling about, but oh well. It was my first ever performance on a real stage alone, and it was a big thing for me.
I've always been singing, sung in all the small gatherings my Mum and Granny took me and Sis to, and thought nothing of it. I had also been performing with the school choir, but then one day when I was thirteen I think, my music teacher asked if I'd do a solo performance in the morning assembly. Now the morning assembly was a big thing in our school. All of the 700+ pupils and all the staff gathered together at the beginning of each school day to the central hall of the school, and there'd usually be the headmaster or one of the teachers speaking, a current issue we needed to know, or a "thought for the day", something inspirational. It was here that I was to sing, all alone, accompanied by my music teacher on piano.
Rehearsing had been so much fun, but when the particular morning came, it was such a huge thing to face. To go there, stand all alone next to the grand piano, my only support sitting behind the huge black thing. To stand there in front of all my classmates and the older kids and teachers… My, was I nervous. So nervous in fact that when the teacher played the short intro I was for a while at a total and complete loss for the words. They were in Swedish, too, which naturally didn't make remembering them any easier, since I hadn't been studying the language for that long. It took only a couple of seconds, however, before I caught up with them, and then I remembered all the verses without a problem, but those certainly were among the longest seconds of my life. But I survived, and the elation I felt afterwards has undoubtedly kept me going to the stage afterwards. Yes, I do love performing.
There have been other moments I consider perhaps "brave". Travelling to England at nineteen on train through Sweden, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands, especially parting with my friends in London to go to a strange place to stay with people I'd only exchanged a couple of letters with, not knowing if they'd even be at the station to meet me or not (no mobile phones had even been thought of in those days…). Some years later, telling Mum about me and Better Half. Facing my fear of dogs, created by our Dachsie who turned unpredictable and aggressive, and taking a new puppy. (Suddenly shuddered to think, what if I hadn't… well, I certainly wouldn't be me now, with six Dandies snoring around the house while I type.) Then some of the unavoidable kind: five years ago, saying good-bye to Mum when she was in terminal care, knowing I'd probably never see her again. Supporting Dad through the worst times after, teaching him to cope. A couple of years later, travelling south to support and help Sis after Dad passed away. But these are things one does because one must.
The second part of Kim's challenge was to make a list of Five Photography Dreams. Don't know if I have any - wait, at least some, though I'm not sure how brave and bold they are.
I'd like to learn to
- take better photos of the dogs
- take nice photos indoors and in low light
- shoot more in manual mode
- develop my eye for composition
- select and keep only the best photos I take
Then to the third part of the challenge, creating a picture that somehow depicts "brave". My take is from spring 2010.
This Wood Pigeon arrived up here in mid-April, when there still was plenty of snow and precious little for him to feed on. It's not always a good thing to be the early bird! But he - and a few days later on another, she perhaps - found our feeding post. For a couple of weeks perhaps they visited us, and we did hear them cooing in the summer in the woods next to our house, so to our great delight they did survive.
- overlay mask MO8-2012-1 from Assorted Mask Overlays by Jerry Jones
- texture Cool Grunge by Kim Klassen
- texture Softly by RH West