Color is the first contemplative photography assignment because color is easy to recognize and it sparks strong flashes of perception. It is an assignment you can work with over and over again. Color is pleasing. Color is not subtle. Color has no meaning, apart from what thinking-mind superimposes on it. Colorful things can have meaning—like a red mailbox—but red itself has no meaning. It is just an appearance.

Shooting color gives you something to look for that will synchronize eye and mind. When you work with this assignment, keep a narrow focus on color. Your intention should be simple and clear. Look at color in a direct and open way. Look at color out of context. Look as a little child would look: free from associations, memories, references, likes, or dislikes. When you see flashes of color—free from thought—eye and mind will be on the same axis.

Try to avoid being caught by colorful objects, things that you think of as “colorful.” Try to drop your concepts about what you are looking at. Look at the world of color. See the redness of red and the blueness of blue without superimposing anything on them at all.