Tis a gift to be simple

February 28, 2018  •  2 Comments

The photography class that I teach recently learned some of my favorite composition techniques. One of these was simply keeping it simple. Not too much in the background, no props... just simple. It is actually my favorite composition technique to use. I have a white backdrop that I love because it never steals from the subject of my image, but it can reflect back onto my subject a beautiful white light.

I have found that it is my most simplistic work that is also my bravest. When you remove everything and leave only the subject in the frame, it forces the viewer to have no other option than to look at only that subject. I could just as easily fill the space with pretty props to grab attention away from any imperfections and to fill this blank space that might come into question later as to why it was left empty. But I continue to boldly simplify, in photography anyway.

Isn't if funny how we have to be so brave just to be simple?

Monday morning I was in the car line at my younger children's school and as my oldest daughter was opening her door we heard a little voice say "Hi, Mel!". I had to remind her to return the hello because she was only curiously looking around to find out who had said it. She put her chin down to her chest and said "hi" in a whisper that I knew the other little girl didn't hear. I wouldn't say Melody is shy by any means but she does tend to have a lot of overwhelming fears that are playing through her mind at any given time. I hesitated to pull away from where my daughters got out of the car until I made sure that they were well on their way to the door of the school.

The little girl who had spoken to Melody had walked a little bit in front of her when she suddenly stopped, like a thought had occurred to her. She turned and walked toward my daughter and grabbed her hand. Without saying a word to each other, they walked together hand-in-hand into the building. I couldn't help the tears forming in my eyes at this simple yet brave gesture, and the little song "simple gifts" came to my mind.


Tis a gift to be simple, tis a gift to be free

Tis a gift to come down where we ought to be 

And when we find ourselves in the place just right

it will be in the valley of love and delight.


How brave and beautiful this little girl was. As an adult, I think I have lost a lot of this braveness and simplicity in my life. How scared would I be to just go grab a friend's or acquaintance's hand and walk with them just because the thought occurred to me to do so?  Terrified, is the answer. 

Since Monday, the beauty of simplicity has been on my mind. I would love to be able to just live a life where "simplicity" is more often the right answer and going with what your heart tells you to do isn't so scary.  Sometimes we sink into a life surrounded by complications that seem to only distract us from being simply loving and brave. 

I take note of this little girls actions, I want to be more like her

...to be a light reflecting on those around me, to be brave enough to follow my heart, to love all others before myself....

and to do all of that simply and with no complicated web of other thoughts trying to steal it away....  to be in the valley of love and delight.


2 Corinthians 1:12 ....that we behaved in the world with simplicity and godly sincerity, not by earthly wisdom but by the grace of God, and supremely so toward you.


Today Be Simply Loving & Brave,







Carolyn moore(non-registered)
Good thoughts Andrea. Always listen to your inner child wisdom cause there is always a part of you that God talks to you in truth and simplicity and you have listened and learned well from His wisdom. Thanks for sharing
Sharon Shepherd(non-registered)
I love "simple" folks. They have such sweet heart.
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