Lighthouse and Clouds
The Lighthouse at the Yacht Club Resort stands on a pier out in Crescent Lake at Walt Disney World, as seen during our June 2018 visit. We were engaged in one of our favorite activities, walking around to all of the different Epcot Resorts. At least, it is one of my favorite activities, and everyone else goes along with me. Usually, because we stop for ice cream at one of the resorts along the way.
Of course, this is not a real lighthouse. I take that back. It is an actual house with a light in the top of it, so I suppose you could consider it to be “real.” However, it is not a functioning lighthouse in the terms of guarding against boats hitting the shore, as compared to the Kīlauea Lighthouse that we visited in Kauaʻi, which is a real lighthouse that does not function any more. Still, the Yacht Club Lighthouse is interesting to see, and it provides lots of good photo opportunities.
In this case, those clouds behind the Lighthouse helped to make the photo even better. I could not have ordered better clouds, if I could have ordered clouds. Which of course I could not. But I was happy to take what I was given. Contentment is the key so very often.
You can see more from this visit at the June 2018 Florida Trip archives.
So many times these days, we have trouble with finding contentment. After all, so much of our society, particularly social media, is driven by envy these days. (See this article at another site for a discussion about the age of envy.) And as you can probably guess, envy is the enemy of contentment.
Everyone is always telling us that we have to have this or that. We need to change something. We need to do more. We aren’t good enough unless we do something different. While there is always room for growth and change, that really should be driven more by a desire to serve God more perfectly than by trying to keep up with, or be better than, everyone else.
Contentment has many bonuses. It helps you to sleep better at night, because you are not so worried about what might happen, what you might should have done differently, or what you might be missing out on. It can also save you lots of money, because you do not feel like you have to buy the latest phone, clothes, shoes, car, house, watch, toothpaste, or whatever else helps you to have what everyone else seems to have.
But one of the biggest bonuses of contentment is that it helps you to feel better about yourself. You can like yourself for who you are, where you are, with what you have. Often times, contentment and self-confidence go hand in hand.
Don’t always be looking forward to the next thing, because once you get it, you will then be looking forward to the next thing after that. Instead be content with what you have. Like yourself for who you are. Unless you just really are not a likeable person, then change that so that you can be content with yourself.
Just imagine how much more pleasant the world would be if everyone found contentment. The advertising market would die, but the world would be so much better. Do what you can to make it that way.
But godliness with contentment is a great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with these. - 1 Timothy 6:6-8
About the Photo
For this photo, I tried something new. I say that sometimes about some little thing here or there, but this time around it involved a major shift.
For quite a while now, much of my photo processing has relied on the Nik Filters plugin for Photoshop. If you are not aware, Google purchased the Nik Filters a few years ago and made them available for everyone for free. But then another company purchased them from Google last year, and now they are a paid plugin once again. The filters downloaded from Google still work, but I have wondered if there is coming a time when they would not work any longer, such as with future versions of Photoshop. So I recently began looking for alternatives.
With just a few simple searches, I found some simple tricks that were just what I was looking for. And these just involved native Photoshop functions instead of something else to download and buy. For example, this tutorial and this discussion were two that I have found and used. I have used those in varying degrees so far, and I have used a few other curve adjustments and such as well. With all of those, I have been able to produce some photos that have the same sort of look I was getting from Nik Filters, if not better.
As always, I am continuing to refine my techniques. But to me, that constant learning and experimentation is what makes photo processing fun.
While that may seem to some to fly in the face of the contentment discussion above, I do not think that it does. After all, contentment does not mean that you do not have room for improvement. It just means that you are not driven by selfish motives and greed to reach that improvement. After all, there is always room for personal growth, if you want it.
Photo: A single Raw exposure, processed in Photoshop. Read more about photography tips, photo software, camera gear, and more at Steve’s Photography Tips.
Camera: Olympus OM-D E-M10
Lens: Olympus M.Zukio 25mm f1.8
Date: June 14, 2018
Location: Yacht Club Resort, Walt Disney World, Florida