30-Day Photography Challenge

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10906150_10203258713611087_794710641399632950_nI haven’t been cross-posting anything Facebook-related to this blog, but a recent challenge I decided to take on seems to be worth putting on here as well. (It’s deeper than normal for Facebook).

For the next 30 days I’ll be posting photos based on the prompts to the left. I’ve already done three, so I’ll upload them to get caught up. Then I’ll post something every day thereafter, and I’ll use the tag 30dpc to indicate the posts.

If nothing else, this challenge will encourage me to keep my SLR ready-to-hand. And maybe rationalize buying a nice telephoto lens. And a tripod.

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500 words

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I made a commitment yesterday: ≥500 words of creative writing a day. (I made other commitments, too, but I’m making this one public because I want witnesses).

It doesn’t have to be all in my novel (writing in here counts, too), but it does have to be creative. Or thoughtful. Or at least not business-oriented. I do a lot business writing every day, and the purpose of creating a creative writing goal is to expand into concepts and words that go beyond the business case or the project plan or the almost continuous emails. I hope to expand beyond my novel, actually, in order to give my mind a break when I’m stuck with a scene or with the plot. Shifting gears into a poem, a short story, an essay, or even a philosophical aphorism may allow me to continue writing without the writing feeling forced.

That may mean more writing on this blog. Which, let’s be honest (or at least, let me be honest with myself), wouldn’t have to be much to be considered more.

Too many, too young

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I know I live in a city that has a relatively low median income (Everett,WA). Maybe it’s also because I take public transportation. Whatever the reason, the number of young homeless I see in this community is striking. It saddens me. Deeply. And it tells me a story of a society that is struggling to maintain cohesion. The future of our society will in part be determined by these young people who are, for the moment (and maybe forever), outside the bounds of our society. What will happen as they get older? How will their worldview shape the world around them? How will it reshape our society? The consequences of this pervasive homelessness is perhaps unknown but not in doubt.

You had me at “ontological”

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I’m very seriously considering going back to school for a degree in Landscape Architecture. There are a lot of reasons why, but the biggest one has to do with my vision for sustainable design. I am passionate about creating built environments that interact with the surrounding ecology instead of impinging upon it (or obliterating it completely).

So…I’ve been exploring various programs both distant and close to home. The following quote comes from a document about the Capstone project for a program that’s close to home:

Methods and Study Area / Study Participants

What ontological or epistemological frame will you use to approach your topic, and why? What kind of data will you need, and why? Specifically, how will you collect your data (details of mapping techniques, or interview protocols, or field and lab work of other kinds)? How will you analyze your data, and why?

This entire section—the philosophical terms, the word “data,” the concept of lab and field work—made me want to cry. It’s a thing of beauty. More than ever, this seems like the right decision for me. My inner geek is very pleased.