Gardens for Anne
I started week 48 a little late due to the back log from week 47. However, I had a huge burst of inspiration from a serendipitous encounter at the garden on Grove St. It was a warm Sunday, late in the morning. Peter and I went for a walk and have been curious to explore the bike trail up the road from us that leads through the Grove St. neighborhood. We enjoyed taking in the new sights and sounds. As we made our way back home down 4th St we stumbled upon a little gated neighborhood garden. At that moment a couple was getting out of their truck to go in the garden. Chance would have it that Peter happened to have gone sailing with them about a month prior on Bob Gould's new beautiful wooden boat out in Cedar Key.
Turns out they were having a reading that day of Anne Frank's The Diary of a Young Girl. They were gracious enough to invite us for part of the reading. Apparently they read from Anne's diary every year in honor of her birthday. She would have been 89 this year. Six glasses of sparkling cider were poured, Mozart's Eine kleine Nachtmusik playing in the background, and we gave a toast to Anne. They asked if I would start the reading.
I haven't read this book in 15 years or so. To read it again, now, in this moment in history gave me chills the entire time. I had read the book when I was Anne's age at the time of her entries, and here I was reading it again with new eyes and way more experience. I realized how sweet she was in her adolescent ways, fawning over shy Peter. But I also realized how insightful she was at such a young age. I especially remember the part where her mother says that one should think about all the suffering in the world and be grateful you're not part of it. But Anne felt differently. One should live and love and appreciate the beauty in the world rather than become part of the suffering itself.
A seventh reader came just as we were about to start reading. He had his clarinet with him and played a song (A Night in the Garden or something like that) after everyone had a turn. It was lovely and beautiful, and everything about that moment felt so right.
We said our goodbyes and thank yous and went on our way with new insight and a little spark in our eyes. I knew this week would be something about gardens and flowers and life and love. The idea was a little harder to put into practice of course. Finding flower images was challenging. It's been ages since I've shot flowers, and the good images were either too small or flawed in some way to stand on their own. I decided to use the clone stamp (think of a brush that copies information from another source, hence the clone part) from the images that struck me the most and add them to the raw file. There was something missing though. Another morning walk brought us back to the garden. Having only my cell phone on hand a snapped a shot of the gate looking into the garden. Found the icing on the cake!
For some edits I wanted something dreamy, ethereal to convey a sense of soft peacefulness. For others I aimed for bright sunshiny days with a rainbow of flowers in bloom steeped in lush greens. I chose the garden image with the gate as I thought it would give a greater sense of place. I also loved all the beautiful curves on the gate and thought it would add some nice contrast to the straight lines from the raw image. The sky even resembles a heart in some of the edits adding to the love. What do you like about this week's edits? When was the last time you read Anne Frank's diary? Any ideas or questions sparked from this week's edits? Please leave them in the comments below. Thank you for your support.