Jess Gibbs

Photographer

Jess Gibbs is a photographer from Australia, currently living in Northern California with two dogs: an old red heeler, Sniff, and a young blue heeler, Loua.

Her current project is a photo-a-day challenge called “It’s Still A Beautiful World.” Inspired by finding peace after hardship, it’s a therapeutic study in slowing down and noticing the world around her.

We’re drawn to the way Jess’s photography captures light and detail – moments of precise stillness and absolute beauty that, if her keen eye and lens hadn’t captured them, might have otherwise gone unnoticed.

Find out more, in Jess’s words.

Jess in her element
Jess in her element

From Jess:

Late last year my life fell apart in the most unwanted and unexpected kind of way. The kind of way that made everything I knew to be true and happy no longer so, and the path I was so proud to have spread out in front of me disappeared.

In my confusion and sadness, I found myself reading Max Ehrmann’s ‘Desiderata’ over and over. It was the last stanza I kept coming back to: “And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.”

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And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.

— Max Ehrmann

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I remembered something. Something that was true and happy that hadn’t disappeared with everything else – I remembered the way I see the world.

I’ve been a photographer since I was a teenager, and have always thought a photographer’s eye is a privilege. I see the way light falls, and colours pop. I see shapes and textures and lines. I see the way it all comes together to make a beauty that others cast their eyes over and miss.

… A photographer’s eye is a privilege. I see the way light falls, and color pops. I see shapes and textures and lines. I see the way it all comes together to make a beauty that others cast their eyes over and miss.

 

 

So I began a daily photo project. Every day I take and post a photo or two as a reminder of the beauty that’s all around. In these Instagram-filled days it’s easy to think that beauty is all about world-class landscapes and must-see destinations, about the holidays you take and the places you dream of. But it’s actually everywhere in your daily life if you look for it.

I don’t go to specific places looking to find the day’s beauty, and I don’t plan my photos. I go wherever I think my dogs might enjoy walking. Often I go to the same places over and over and over again, but if you start exploring the world around you with your eyes open, you’ll see the beauty is there and it’s different every day.

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It’s true, I do have a van and I love a camping road trip, but that’s not what you need to actually explore. What you need is open eyes and a desire to see the beauty that really does surround you. Wherever you are.

As a small post script, there are two tiny sentences that come at the end of the Desiderata quote, but when I say the words for people, I usually leave them out.

Those words are just for me: “Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.

I do have a van… but that’s not what you need to actually explore. What you need is open eyes and a desire to see the beauty that really does surround you.

Photos courtesy of Jess Gibbs

To see more of Jess’s work see her Portfolio and Project Site
You can also find her on Instagram.

What helps you slow down and find beauty every day?