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(Extra)ordinary

Mundane and meaningful objects. Beautiful everyday things. This week, surprise us with something or someone (extra)ordinary.

Image by Cheri Lucas Rowlands

  • Want to participate? Each Wednesday, we’ll provide a theme. Publish a new post with a photo interpreting the weekly theme. Create a pingback to this week’s challenge to share your post with the community. Learn More.

I’m drawn to creaky doors and tiled floors. Textured walls and abandoned objects on the street. Things or settings we might overlook at first glance. Whether in a new or familiar place, I try to keep my eyes open — to look for beauty or interestingness where I least expect it.

On Alcatraz in San Francisco Bay, you can walk into a prison cell, or a former inmate library, or an old dining hall — there’s so much to look at, so much to learn. And yet my favorite photo from this infamous facility is of a lone sink:

Sink, New Industries Building, Alcatraz, San Francisco

As I toured this space with other visitors, most eyes were on a colorful dragon kite, which floated across the room as part of an Ai Weiwei art exhibit. But I couldn’t stop looking at this sink: it remains after all this time, and very much the focal point of this old wall. It’s an everyday thing, but also special — I can sense the passage the time, the many stories of those who have passed through this building, and the great history of this island.

I expect wildly different and very personal takes on this theme, (Extra)ordinary, because our own ideas and experiences will shape our interpretations. What’s mundane yet meaningful to you? What’s a beautiful everyday thing? Or, maybe you can capture an ordinary setting or common scene that has somehow transformed — with festive decor or a new coat of paint.

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755 Responses Want to participate? Publish a new post on your blog interpreting the theme. Create a pingback to this challenge and we’ll list your post below. Show instructions.

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