Musings...

Perspective

Have you ever noticed that there's a whole world out there full of things that you don't even realize are there until they hold some place of importance in your life? Like cars . . . and dogs . . . and houses for sale. Until I was shopping for a new car I didn't pay any attention to what other people were driving. The same thing happened with dogs. Until I got Ebby, I didn't notice the dozens of people I now see every day walking their dogs. (And I certainly didn't notice how many of them are labs.) I've come to recognize that which is currently important in my life by the changes in my perspective.

I've always loved looking at the sky — the clouds, the sun, the stars — but now I find myself looking at the sky in terms of movement. I've become interested in the art of animation. How must still images change from frame to frame in order to look like they're moving? Yes, of course, they must travel (or rotate or change size) incrementally, but how do the colors, light and shadows change? Even a solid object contracts, expands, contorts, and undulates minutely as it travels. Those changes were imperceptible to my eye until I attempted to create an animation by simply moving an object across the frame. My little animation looked about as real as a $3 bill and all of a sudden I got it! I couldn't just cut that group of pixels and paste them in a new location — it took lots of other subtle changes to make my little animation look real.

I've noticed that I look at life that way now, too. I find myself suddenly able to see those microscopic fluctuations in light, shape, and color -- just because I know to look for them. So when I watched a layer of big fluffly clouds float through the moonlight last night, I didn't just see finite translucent blobs traveling across the sky. Instead I marveled at the way this cloud got rounder, and that one got thinner, and the one over there was secretly racing toward the dawn. I even thought I could see subtle changes in the moon's intensity and shape . . . and I appreciated the scene all the more for having this perspective.