As a child, I can remember fondly, many warm, Fall afternoons laying in the grass along with my friends and watching intently as clouds moved over our heads. We challenged each other to find the shapes of animals or other patterns, and when we did, we watched as the clouds morphed and rearranged themselves, only to finally drift out of sight. Over time we grow out of the carefree simplicity of the days. In the fast pace of our world today when was the last time you actually just stopped and watched the clouds. Personally I can admit that it has been a long time since I did. As a landscape photographer I obviously consider the desire for clouds in my compositions and often seek to mirror their shapes within my images. But in this way the clouds are but a supporting cast member and not necessarily the star of the show.
Not long ago I walked out of the house and just looked up. There was no real reason for this act. At the time I had a lot going on and something just made me stop and look up. It was crazy cloud day. Wind driven cirrus wisps and giant cotton balls, illuminated by the late afternoon sun, drifted by and within minutes had born away all of my thoughts. I watched this for the better part of 15 minutes before running to the car to grab my camera. For the next hour I just metaphorically lay in the grass of my front yard, like a kid again looking for shapes, patterns, and animals. I watched the clouds move and I watched the light change into the soft pastels before sunset. The whole experience was carefree and felt quite inventive and creative. I had no real agenda, no place to be, and nothing pressing as all of those thoughts had long been whisked away. It had been a long time since I had spent some time with clouds. Perhaps their visit this day was simply a reminder to look up every now then and let some things go if only for a brief moment.