2019 WEEK 28: Wabi-Sabi

This week’s theme falls under the umbrella of “words/concepts that have no English equivalent.” (Thanks to challenge members Susan Lehmann for the suggestion and Juliet McMurren for the word “wabi-sabi”.) I think this will be a great way to expand our horizons and think outside the box this week.

Withering Sunflower by Jeanie Sumrall-Ajero
Withering Sunflower by Jeanie Sumrall-Ajero

Wabi-sabi is a new concept for me, so I had to do a bit of research to gain a modicum of understanding about it. Some key phrases jumped out at me as I tried to wrap my head around the idea:

  • Wabi-sabi is the Japanese art of finding beauty in imperfection and profundity in nature, of accepting the natural cycle of growth, decay, and death… it reveres authenticity above all. (https://bit.ly/2Xqkt7M)
  • It acknowledges three simple realities: “Nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.” (https://bit.ly/2Jt0NGi)
  • Both life and art are beautiful not because they are perfect and eternal, but because they are imperfect and fleeting. (https://bit.ly/2XtXRmQ)
  • Essentially it is the art of finding beauty in the imperfect, impermanent and incomplete. (https://bit.ly/2XoFq2O)

There’s a good chance that wabi-sabi is unfamiliar to you as well, so I encourage you to read more than one article to gain as much understanding of the concept as you can before taking a photo this week. In addition to the articles linked above, there are plenty more easily found with a quick google search.

The Challenge

  • Take a new photo that embodies the concept of wabi-sabi. There is a lot of room for interpretation this week. Creativity is encouraged.
  • Post your photo during the week of Sunday, July 7 and Saturday, July 13.
  • Please remember to comment on at least FIVE photo submissions this week by answering the question “why?” in your comments. In other words, “why do I like (or not like) this photo?” or “why did this photo catch my eye?” Thank you!

The friendly community guidelines are pretty simple:

  • Take a new photo for the current weekly theme, not something from your back catalog or someone else’s image.
  • Post your photo each week to our active communities on Facebook or Flickr (or both). Tag the photo:  #2019photochallenge #photochallenge #tempusaura
  • Don’t leave home without your camera. Participating in the 2019 Trevor Carpenter Photo Challenge is fun and easy.

About thedigitaljeanie

I’m a self-taught photographer and way back when I used to love taking photos, but I allowed a business that I started in 2004 to take over my life and my photographic repertoire was reduced to quick product shots and how-to tutorials. When I joined the PhotoChallenge in December 2015, I was looking to rekindle my creativity and bring some joy back into my photography. I jumped in with both feet and have not looked back. I believe that photography can change the way we see and interact with the world around us. Some people may think that I hide behind the camera, but I feel that I experience the world in a much more intimate way when I am creating a composition in my viewfinder. In those moments distractions disappear, my mind focuses and I am fully present. It is just me and my camera capturing a moment in time that might otherwise go unnoticed. My background is as varied as the photos that I take. I’ve trained and worked as a software engineer, a massage therapist, an English teacher in Vietnam, a photo restoration artist (which is how I learned Photoshop) and for the past twelve years I have run a small software business with my husband where I have been published in numerous books and magazines, appeared on PBS television, created designs for fabric, quilts and machine embroidery and won awards for some of my quilts. It should come as no surprise that I am intensely curious about life and love to learn new things. I am blessed to live in the beautiful state of Colorado, USA in the Rocky Mountain foothills outside of Fort Collins with my husband and cat. You can find me online at: Photos: flickr.com/photos/the-digital-jeanie/ Day job: KaleidoscopeCollections.com Facebook: facebook.com/jeaniesa