Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Life in the shadows - sometimes it's what you don't see


"Life in the Shadows"

Sometimes what's most striking is what you don't see.
The absense of light creates its own reality.

I've been feeling pulled in quite a few directions lately, creatively speaking, and it's painfully obvious in my scattered unfocused umm, eclectic, yes, let's go with that, my eclectic recent blog content. If you visited one day you might be utterly certain that this was a photography blog, on another day just as certain that it was a straightforward momblog, or perhaps it's a writing blog, or maybe a "mom to a special needs child" blog, or is it an expat blog, and hey, wait a minute, didn't I see a few recipes in here as well, maybe it's a food blog (no, it's not. At least not most of the time. Sorry.)
Because this blog IS, in fact, above all else a reflection of my life, it turns out that that's what you get. A hodge-podge. A mish-mash. A big gigantic mess. An assortment. A variety. A melange. A... (Ok, ok, I'll shut up now with the images. No need to run from the room screaming.)
It accompanies me on my path. Sometimes it follows, like when I talk about my life here in Israel or about my challenges and triumphs in parenting two very different but utterly wonderful kids. Other times it walks alongside, for example when I share a recipe for chicken in green curry sauce or no-knead-beer-bread. And there are times when it actually leads me, like when I actively search for subject matter for writing prompts or photography projects.
I don't always, or even often, know what is hanging out there in the shadows of my mind, waiting to be set free. What wanted to be said yesterday may not want to be said tomorrow. Sometimes I post of my challenges with Maya (which I might mention are fewer at the moment if I weren't so afraid of tempting the fates, so I won't. Nope, even this faint whisper was too much. The Fates were tempted and everything went to hell. 'Nuff said.) so that I can wrap myself in this larger community of "parents who understand" while other times it feels too raw, too exposed. Sometimes it's the muses who need to be heard, to tell the mother to go put her feet up for a bit and curl up with a good book and a cute umbrella drink while they take over the shop for a while. The only problem there is that the writing muse and the photography muse don't always play nicely together, with each one feeling like they should have the starring role, the queen of the blog, so to speak. We've been learning to share our toys nicely, some days more successfully than others, so you may start seeing more of their combined efforts in the days to come. On the other hand, you may not.

You'll just have to come by each day and see for yourselves who won that morning's catfight.

The photo Plant in Shadow has been removed from this post as it has been accepted for publication elsewhere.

These photos, and the words which they then called into being, are my response to the Matinee Muse prompt "life in the shadows". I love the fact that this new site (which grew out of the former Writers Island in more ways than one, as it's the creation of Writers Island's Rob's own son) has launched itself as a "creativity" prompt, encouraging submissions in a variety of media. Some days it's the words that come almost of their own volition, tripping over each other in their hurry to be heard, while other days it's the images which cry out to be seen. And sometimes, on very lucky days, it's both.



Leora said...

I have an eclectic blog, too. Join the club.

Wonderful, wonderful photo. Tells a story, I think. You do have a good eye.

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

The eclectic nature of this place is partly what keeps me coming back.

And yes, the new prompt site is cool! I've already got it in my reader but am going to sit out a few weeks with all the adventures I've got coming up -- none of which include Internet.

Robert said...

I can only speak for myself, but I like coming here for many of the things you mentioned. Tops on the list for me are photography (I know, big surprised coming from me!), your writing - particularly your reflections such as done here, and issues about being a parent. You almost sound apologetic for covering so many bases. Don't. It's what keeps this reader coming back. :)

Unknown said...

well, they DO say that variety is the spice of life! :) there's a little something for everyone!

Robin said...

Don't worry guys, I'm not the slightest bit apologetic about it, it's who I am. It just makes me feel pulled in too many directions at times, and a bit unfocused. Doesn't mean I'm going to stop, just that I'm feeling a bit more scattered than usual.

Beth said...

I just popped in from MY PIECE OF THE WORLD. I saw where you were in 9th grade in '83 too! :-)

Laurie of the Seven Stories said...

You couldn't have described my blog better. I think its good for a blog to be multidimensional, real- not scripted or fashioned to fit one specific title.
I like your little island- hope that you enjoy my playground.

totomai said...

first, lovely photos.

i think we have some similarities regarding our blog, its random yet its personal. hehe.

with or without comment, as long as you have written down what you wanted to express its all fine :-)

nice meeting you

Shannon said...

Oh I have missed you and your beautiful words and pictures. Great post and I must say that I love the hodge-podge. Its not contrived, its just you - and that is what makes your blog so special.

Janet said...

I have to tell you, Robin, that's what I like most about your blog and what keeps me coming back. I don't like same old, same old, I embrace eclectic!

Judy Schwartz Haley | CoffeeJitters.Net said...

The current wisdom is that a blog must have a focus, but personally I disagree. I love an eclectic blog that shows off all the different facets of the personality behind the blog.

Gemma Wiseman said...

Enjoyed your comments on the "shadows of your mind". It is quite refreshing to explore different avenues without re-tracing steps too often.

anthonynorth said...

I know the feeling. Mine's the same. Is it a current affairs blog? A writing blog? Poetry? A blog about the unexplained? Essays?

anymommy said...

I identified with your words so much. I guess we write personal blogs, true reflections of personalities. You are one of my favorite photographers, though, I have to say!

Robin said...

I think I too am most attracted to eclectic blogs. Since I've got varying interests myself I tend to read other blogs that offer that diversity. Keeps life interesting :).

Thank you too anymommy for the comment about my photography. It means more to me than you realize because I only started getting serious (well, novice/amateur serious anyway) about photography a few months ago.

Jill said...

As a newbie here, I'm enjoying catching up on the many different facets of your blog. Stay different - it's awesome.

Anonymous said...

I always love the posts your write in response to creativity prompts. I find them inspiring.

As for being eclectic? Keep it up. You know I love it.

rebecca said...

i love this new you.... the mixing of arts, visual and word. in time they will learn how to get along.

this photo is extraordinary. you have a good eye. and, fret not, dear robin, many sites are melanges of sorts (mine included) .... it is whatever the muses or the inclination or the need needs to voice. each one gets a little attention and that way it makes for one happy person... :)

Anonymous said...

Just love your double sided blog. It works so well. The only thing I have that's eclectic is my kettle!

Claremont First Ward said...

My blog seems to go through similar ebbs and flows.......I can't get enough of yours and always look forward to new content.

Robin said...

Thanks guys, and Keith, now I'm curious about your kettle. What makes it eclectic?

Anonymous said...

I totally *love* the mish-mash!! I just hate the fact I can't seem to make it over here as often as what I'd like. Summer is always so hectic around here, and I'm behind on ALL my favorite blogs!!