Feature image metadata: Canon 5D Mark III, Canon 70-200mm f/4L IS lens, 6 sec at f/16, ISO 100 (6-stop ND filter used for long-exposure)

The simple act of creating art is oftentimes all that I need to get through the day. Even with the other crafty things I do, such as ceramics, the pure motion of forming the clay into something that is beautiful is enough make me happy. I also knit, and the reason I knit is to watch what I am making slowly become something usable, beautiful, and soft.

The moment of creation is what I live for.

Sure, it’s great to share a photo online, or print a photograph and hang it on my wall. With my ceramics, actually using one of my finished pieces, or giving one away as a gift, makes me happy. But in many ways that feeling pales in comparison to the moment I actually have created a piece of art that does nothing more than make me smile.

I’m making a concerted effort to go back through my photographs and find those moments that I lived that made me feel that way. We all know what it feels like to look at our photo and just know that we got “the one”. But how many of those photos actually see the light of day? At least with ceramics and knitting, by the end of the process I have something to show for it. With photography, there is always more work to be done.

I photographed this image on the Big Island of Hawaii, and as soon as I was working the scene I knew it was going to be something special. The little patch of green grass was the icing on the cake … I love long exposures, and getting to photograph along the rocky coastline of Hawaii sure was paradise. I still have hundreds of images (and maybe even more!) over the past few years that I need to sort through and find so that I can relive those moments once again. Every photograph I take has a story behind it, and a memory attached to it. I make photographs to remember my life, so why not relive the best moments as often as possible?

Here’s the behind-the-scenes of this setup:

This article was originally published on Nicolesy.com