Knot Beauty


Sitting at my studio table in winter sunshine, frustrated with my lack of direction. Though I have hundreds of photos from my time in SoCal, and tens of thousands more from my years of following the light wherever it will take me, I don't know what direction to move in now. Nothing is clamoring for my attention; nothing needs to be delivered. Every creative person feels this, I remind myself, it's just part of the process. But those deeply ingrained voices see this as an opportunity to chime in with their opinions. Maybe I shouldn't be thinking of images at all. Maybe this is the time I should be revising my novel. What about all the cleaning-up and organizing I've been putting off? I begin to feel overwhelmed. A binding project sits unfinished in front of me, and I pick it up out of desperation. It's a simple saddle-stiched book I started for a class—the holes are punched and the needle is threaded. All I have to do is fill in the blanks. It doesn't matter where I start. My hand pulls the needle through the paper, and suddenly I'm mesmerized by the shadows cast by the curling thread. Before I know it my camera is back in action. Here is unexpected beauty, right in front of my nose. The solution to my lack of direction is obvious—just fill in the blanks. It doesn't matter where I start.