Most of us are so busy doing whatever it is we are doing that we have lost the ability to see and appreciate that which is around us. With our faces constantly in our cell phones or staring at computer screens or reading the paper, we have lost the art of just looking and seeing. Not so Korean photographer Ahae. Over the course of four years, Ahae has taken more than 2.6 million photographs of nature – with one important twist. All the photographs were taken from the same window in his house.
Strongly interested and fascinated by nature, Ahae lives in Korea where he manages organic farms and lives among nature. But, unlike most of us, he has not lost the art of seeing. He shows us just how much ‘hidden’ beauty and ‘hidden’ nature can lie outside one single window – if only we stopped to look and to see.
Some of the images that Ahae creates are normally invisible to us. The beautiful pattern created by the flying bird below would not be visible to the naked eye – it would disappear too quickly. But Ahae’s combination of observation and photographic capture has created a set of images so varied and so extensive that it is almost impossible to believe that everything was seen out of a single window.
Ahae’s incredible project may serve to remind us of many things. First, the beauty of nature is everywhere for us to see – even out of a single window. Second, that we have much to enjoy by regaining our ability to see – patiently to observe and to spend time appreciating what is around us. Finally, we don’t necessarily need to go to extraordinary places to seek experiences. There may be very many of them just in our own back yard.
Ahae has his own way of seeing, capturing and representing the nature that he observes. Each of us would see it and capture it differently – make different meanings of it. But it is there for us to see if only we can find the time to look.