while creating is a blank.
It is a very active state of mind really,
a very receptive state of mind,
ready at an instant to grasp an image,
yet with no image pre-formed
in it at any time.
Such a state of mind is not unlike
a sheet of film itself—
seemingly inert, yet so sensitive
that a fraction of a second’s exposure
conceives a life in it.
I photographed after a heavy snowfall. The woods were dense enough, and the snow deep enough, that I was never quite sure what I’d find when I walked from the road, lowered my head beneath those first branches, and stepped into the middle of that timbered canopy. I took seriously Minor White’s observation about maintaining a state of mind that is as blank as possible.
I have learned that when I try too hard, the “goal of blank” becomes too much an active goal and the blankness too easily recedes. Then just when I think it may be gone, and I turn to walk out of the woods, it sometimes hits me—a sudden appearance that says, “Hi!”
The click of the shutter is my way of saying “hi” right back.