I wake up early. The world is quieter then, it creates a space that I don’t often find.

It has become a practice of mine to try to bring everything down to its simplest form. It started with photographs, slowly removing all the distractions until such a beautiful minimalism was left that I finally felt like I could see clearly. I followed it with other creative things – music where each note was integral to the overall piece, poetry where every word added to the feeling.

In the mornings that have become mine, I go out and I walk. I walk off the clutter in my mind, the aches in my body. Some mornings it is still dark when I set out, the soft light before sunrise reaching across from a corner of the sky and slowly pulling back the night. Other days the day comes on suddenly, light replacing dark without me even being aware of its coming. Some days the sun rises before me.

Morning is when nature’s tiny details are most evident, not yet disturbed by human activity. The water still clings to leaves, flowers begin to open and the snails commence their painstaking journey across the path to the safety of the grass on the other side. Birds take flight. Spiders weave threads between the trees in intricate patterns.

I walk year round now, a ritual cultivated over time. In summer, I am one step ahead of the heat, relishing the relief before the sun sets its course. In winter, I walk in the mist and the rain, breathing the cold air into my lungs. Some days I listen to music. Some days I listen to the earth speak.

Some days I take my camera and capture what I can of the stillness to bring home with me.