Expect the Unexpected

It snowed in Seattle this weekend, with more snow forecast for Wednesday and Thursday. And it's not supposed to get above 30 degrees all week. Unexpected.

There are two general attitudes towards the unexpected: panic or embrace.Tthe panic attitude doesn't know what to do with the newness, and uncertainty. The embrace attitude sees opportunity in the differences from the norm and looks for ways to be enriched by them.

I mentioned here that I would be taking pictures of Seattle landmarks for the Summer Reading Program at the Seattle Public Library. As with most outdoor events this time of year in Seattle, there were some unexpected moments. Here's a few of those moments and how I tried to embrace them (FYI – photos are still pretty raw, with no tweaking yet.)

The first stop on my photo tour was the Pike Place Market sign. No rain, low clouds – off to a good start. Except… it's early December and there are Christmas trees and lights on the sign – not good for a poster to be used in the summer.

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I knew that it would take far too much work in Photoshop to remove the trees from this picture, so I decided to "embrace" and take a close up photo of the clock, which is an iconic element of this sign.

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Every Seattle landmark photo shoot has to include the Space Needle, and I chose to get close to the Needle and shoot looking up. My thinking is that this will have nice nice "sun" motif possibilities for the summer-themed materials. 

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The vantage point for this shot was next to the Experience Music Project, which provided this unexpected texture…

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The last stop on my expedition was the Fremont neighborhood to take pics of the Troll (he was easy) and the "waiting for the Interurban" statue. This statue is about two feet from the curb with 3 lanes of traffic running by it. I was not able to get a good shot from the curb, and there was too much traffic to walk into the street. So, I "embraced" again, and set up on the opposite sidewalk, planning to grab the shot quickly as traffic cleared between red lights. At this moment, the Fremont drawbridge was raised for boat traffic and all vehicular traffic stopped for approximately ten minutes. After traffic moved on, I grabbed the following shot, which should work nicely with a bit of cleanup of construction signs and other unwanted stuff.

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What is your natural response to the unexpected? What steps can you take to getting to a place of embracing the unexpected and having it enrich your creative opportunities?