A traditional art form has been greatly facilitated by the advent of the digital camera. The art of Miksang was begun as a meditational tool by Shambhala Buddhists, but it has implications for painters and other creative people. The idea is to find joy and awareness by attending to the minor and seemingly insignificant- the colors, patterns and textures that exist in the close-up world. Miksang is a Tibetan word that means "good eye". Shambhalas think widespread use might lead to more compassionate and enlightened societies.
This is from the website of Robert Glenn...I was intrigued with the concept and went out with my camera to capture the macro world around me.
Some problems I ran into....I played around quite a bit to find a setting that allowed me to take photo's this close. I ended up using the SCN1 setting on my camera along with a tri-pod. I also had a hard time actually seeing....you know, the old eyes have trouble focusing and what looked great through the viewfinder was TOTALLY out of focus.
These days Buddhist instructors in several countries are handing digital cameras to kids. Children seem to take to it faster than adults and, according to some, get better results. Instructors need to be certified by the Toronto-based "Miksang Society for Contemplative Photography." Part of the Miksang philosophy is that subjects must be found and collected "as is" and not moved or adjusted to improve composition. Subjects can be man-made or from the natural world.
What value does Miksang have for creative folks? Obviously, Miksang makes for pause, reflection and quiet centering. By increasing awareness, one builds a feeling of wonder and kinship with the overlooked. But its real value is in seeing design and the subtlety of color. To the discriminating eye the macro world is a minor symphony. Looking through a viewfinder and making decisions home the ability to find the larger compositions. It's all about the acquired skills of looking and seeing. Buddhist or not, this art can be performed at any time and any place. Robert Glenn
I greatly enjoyed this exercise. I always pay some attention to the composition but do much more with composition of my photographs in PhotoShop, so this was interesting to spend time with the composition knowing I wasn't going to PhotoShop them. These are not as macro as I'd like but will continue to figure out how best to use my camera in this way. One other interesting thing, this shot above is from my garage window and I have never noticed this box in the window, that has been there for years, says Parsley until I focused on this image!