Forget Not That The Earth Delights

Forget Not That The Earth Delights

The dog is an Italian Spinoza that I saw as I was walking to the shops a couple of weeks ago.

He was being stroked by a woman who was a friend of the owner and I moved around trying to get a shot.

I wanted to capture as much of him as possible while not including the woman’s arm or the bicycle rack in the background.

The reason I am mentioning this is that what was also going through my mind were the following thoughts:

    Will the woman object to me taking the photos?

    How am I going to get the dog to look at me? (I tried clicking my tongue.)

    How brave you are, David, not being too concerned about whether the woman objects.

    There’s nothing wrong with taking a photo on the street.

    I wonder what kind of dog it is?

    It’s a lovely dog. I wonder whether my camera is going to focus well?

I didn’t think too much about the camera settings, but looking at the EXIF data I must have opened up the aperture a couple of stops from the setting at which I normally keep it.

I must have done this as I was approaching the dog or as I got my camera out of the bag.

Knowing what aperture I wanted (and ISO setting) is half the battle and comes with experience. But equally important is to know the camera really well so that there is no hesitation wondering which dial to twiddle or which menu to dive into.

When I first got the camera – it’s an Olympus E-PM1 – I spent a while working out how to change the settings that are important to me. I thought it was going to be fiddly to change aperture and exposure compensation, but eventually I worked out how to do it quickly.

The camera came with a bulky manual, but I soon realised it was in fact a small quick-start manual of just a few pages, but in 76 different languages.

The main manual is on the DVD that came in the box, but I have never looked at it.

Here is the EXIF data that the Mac ‘i’ shows. (the ‘i’ is at the top of the Finder window, or you can use Cmd+i.) One thing it doesn’t show is the ISO.

Mac EXIF data
Mac EXIF data

And here is the EXIF data in Adobe Bridge (which does show the ISO):

Adobe Bridge EXIF data
Adobe Bridge EXIF data

Making An Ecard

I wanted to use the shot for an ecard with a quote (don’t you think the quote from Kahlil Gibran that Tamara found fits well?), so I had to mask out the background to an overall colour that would fit with the colours of the dog.

I chose this colour by eye, and I am not sure what to call it – maybe it’s taupe?

7 thoughts on “Forget Not That The Earth Delights

  1. What an interesting looking dog with such a calm and thoughtful expression. The eye color is unusual and I’ll go with “taupe”. BTW I think the quote is a perfect match.


  2. Like? No, no – LOVE this post. The dog is beautiful, the colors are captivating and the quote… provocative.


    1. Kahlil Gibran is so pleasurable to read. I like his ‘take’ on work, so fair and even and dignified.

      Then a ploughman said, speak to us of work.

      And he answered, saying:

      You work that you may keep pace with the earth and the soul of the earth.

      For to be idle is to become a stranger unto the seasons, and to step out of life’s procession, that marches in majesty and proud submission towards the infinite.

      When you work you are a flute through whose heart the whispering of the hours turns to music.

      Which of you would be a reed, dumb and silent, when all else sings together in unison?

      Always you have been told that work is a curse and labour a misfortune.

      But I say to you that when you work you fulfil a part of earth’s furthest dream, assigned to you when that dream was born,

      And in keeping yourself with labour you are in truth loving life,

      And to love life through labour is to be intimate with life’s inmost secret.

      But if you in your pain call birth an affliction and the support of the flesh a curse written upon your brow, then I answer that naught but the sweat of your brow shall wash away that which is written.

      You have been told also life is darkness, and in your weariness you echo what was said by the weary.

      And I say that life is indeed darkness save when there is urge,

      And all urge is blind save when there is knowledge,

      And all knowledge is vain save when there is work,

      And all work is empty save when there is love;

      And when you work with love you bind yourself to yourself, and to one another, and to God.

      And what is it to work with love?

      It is to weave the cloth with threads drawn from your heart, even as if your beloved were to wear that cloth.

      It is to build a house with affection, even as if your beloved were to dwell in that house.

      It is to sow seeds with tenderness and reap the harvest with joy, even as if your beloved were to eat the fruit.

      It is to charge all things you fashion with a breath of your own spirit,

      And to know that all the blessed dead are standing about you and watching.

      Often have I heard you say, as if speaking in sleep, “he who works in marble, and finds the shape of his own soul in the stone, is a nobler than he who ploughs the soil.

      And he who seizes the rainbow to lay it on a cloth in the likeness of man, is more than he who makes the sandals for our feet.”

      But I say, not in sleep but in the over-wakefulness of noontide, that the wind speaks not more sweetly to the giant oaks than to the least of all the blades of grass;

      And he alone is great who turns the voice of the wind into a song made sweeter by his own loving.

      Work is love made visible.

      And if you cannot work with love but only with distaste, it is better that you should leave your work and sit at the gate of the temple and take alms of those who work with joy.

      For if you bake bread with indifference, you bake a bitter bread that feeds but half man’s hunger.

      And if you grudge the crushing of the grapes, your grudge distils a poison in the wine.

      And if you sing though as angels, and love not the singing, you muffle man’s ears to the voices of the day and the voices of the night.


  3. “…the whispering of the hours turns to music.” I think that’s my favorite line.
    Once again, I’ve learned something new from new and have imagery to consider as my eyes adjust to the darkness of the room and I slowly, drift off to sleep.


  4. Gibran was a favorite read in college but never seems to be dated. What goes around comes around. It goes well with the dog. Love the dog. Highlights on the top of the head draw the eye to search under floppy hair for it’s eyes.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: