The rising sun

The rhythm of life on a tilted, spherical planet swings once again toward longer days here in the northern hemisphere. The sun now rises high enough to cast long rays of light into my office. A bright winter day is a great reason for me to be thankful.

The temperatures here have been cold (-25°C), and there are still several months of snowy winter here in the mountains. But the sun rises higher each day and send its beams deeper into Folldal valley. The season slowly changes from winter to spring, some days without me even being aware of it.

Sletthøe (left) and Storhøe (right) Folldal, Norway

Human life moves in periods and phases too. We go through cycles of learning and growing, figuring out who we are and who we are not. We adapt to new challenges and discover what really makes us tick. We try new things, we succeed or fail (hopefully on our own scale, more about that later), and we learn. Some days we’re not even aware of how much we’re growing.

Both winter and spring are enjoyable to me, each with their own challenges and wonder. Without muddy, rainy spring days, it would be more difficult for me to appreciate the beauty of snowshoeing in sharp, cold winter air. Putting on layers of clothing for an hour’s walk in the snow reminds me what a blessing it is to go outside without shoes on a warm spring day.

We’re beings attracted to light and life, security and safety. But we also need growth and maturity. Sometimes we must leave one thing behind so we can develop another, more meaningful, thing. We do this often as children, trying something and deciding if it suits us. It becomes more difficult as we age, but shouldn’t it become easier? Adult life is also more enjoyable if it involves time to be playful, to learn by doing without fearing the results.

Slippery: My version of the prompt for Inktober 2020

Where is all this philosophy going?

Let’s return to learning on our own scale. I was a photographer for a decade at my own small business. I failed, I succeeded, I learned, I was enjoying the process. But I compared myself to other photographers who were making a good living and I felt like a failure.

I started saying «yes» to graphic design projects. I knew I had the skillset, even if I didn’t have the official title or degree of Graphic Designer. And it turns out that design brings me more joy than photography. Designing logos, icons, and scientific illustrations gets my neurons firing. It allows me to solve creative, technical problems in ways that professional photography no longer did. And graphic design is a more rewarding business venture for me.

So I started publicly reinventing my business and how I presented myself. I successfully completed design projects for clients. I learned that I relish the newness of each project, researching the science behind what I’m designing. I’m combining my love for creativity with my interest in technology and finding solutions for renewable energy.

As my season changes from photography to graphic design, the last of my framed photographs adorn the walls of my house, reminding me of adventures experienced and lessons learned.

«Eternal Growth». Paris, France ©2005 Marie Warner Preston

Give yourself permission to begin seeking your own happiness today. Purchase artwork for yourself (or someone you know) who needs a little more beauty in their life. Create your own artwork. Support an artist who inspires you. Find some time to grow and play on your journey toward maturity.

My husband, TJ, runs his own business. He asked me to read his latest blog for Soldrevet. I asked if he had read this post, which went live a few days previous to his question. When he said «No», I simply laughed. Read Differential Ski Waxing to learn why.

Published by Outspoken Images by Marie Warner Preston

Creating illustrations for sustainability, stewardship, and science communication.

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