Fiction is like a spider’s web, attached ever so slightly perhaps, but still attached to life at all four corners. Often the attachment is scarcely perceptible. — Virginia Woolf
We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.
— George Bernard Shaw
For me, photography is play.
I have no-one telling me what to shoot; or how and when. I don’t make money from it (although I’d like to one day). The only constraints on me are time, light and my imagination.
The shot above is pure play. Not just the messing about with an onion, a smartphone and some tinfoil (now there’s a sentence you don’t often see), but the afterwards playing — the electronic doodling with photo-editing apps.
Diane Ackerman said “play is our brain’s favorite way of learning”, while the psychologist Jean Piaget offered this advice about creativity:
If you want to be creative, stay in part a child, with the creativity and invention that characterizes children before they are deformed by adult society.
— Jean Piaget
New Zealand is a fairly sparsely populated country with, unsurprisingly, a strong road culture. We used to have a passenger rail network, but outside of Wellington and Auckland and a couple of tourist routes, not so much now.
We build roads as a major economic activity. Roads to provide employment, drive “growth”, let people spend more time in their cars trying to go to the biggest, newest shopping mall.
We call ourselves clean and green, yet tear up and reshape huge swathes of our landscape as housing estates, roads, retail parks, dairy farms. We take land out of food production and lose it forever. We treat the natural world as though it were infinite.
Just because we can’t see the end, doesn’t mean it isn’ there.