Capturing The Beauty of Everyday Life

On December 13, 2012 Mike Leonard bid an emotional farewell to the Today Show.  I’ll never forget it.  I was walking out of the restroom with my boots in my hand, about to leave for the office, when stopped dead in my tracks as Mike’s farewell video began to play.

Mike Leonard

Mike Leonard has made a brilliant career out of turning the hidden beauty of every day life into a master piece that pulls at your heartstrings.  What strikes me the most about Mike’s videos is these emotional and stunning stories are happening around each of us every day.  We just rarely take the time to find the beauty in it as it is happening.

I write on this blog about Leadership and about Productivity.  I offer insight into actions you can take to become more efficient and to fine tune your life so that you may have balance to achieve success in your career but also find the time and opportunity to live a life worth remembering.

What I now realize I’ve never shared is how to remember the times that make your life a magical story.  Why?  Because reflection is not in my strength zone.  For that, I have my wife.  She has taught me the importance of reflection and how to capture the beauty of life in such a way that would make Mike Leonard proud.

Carry a Camera – Thanks to iPhones and other new smartphones capturing the beauty of everyday life is easier than ever.  But if you’re like me you’ll often leave those images on your phone forever, never saving or sharing them.

Shutterfly – Set up an account online then install the app on your phone.  My wife made a folder on my phone for my camera, photos, and shutterfly app.  This makes it easy for me to remember to upload my photos after I take them.

Create A Year Book – Shutterfly offers custom photo albums.  You can simply drag and drop your favorite photos from your account into the books.  My wife made the most amazing book to chronolog our son’s first year.  She makes one of the family every year as well.  Photos of our vacation, funny moments, and just life in general are in these albums.

External Storage – Storage is getting really cheap.  Whether you use iCloud, Picasa, or just a hard storage unit, make sure you’re saving all your images and videos.  You’ll never remember the moments you lose.  I’m always amazed when my wife opens up a folder from years ago and we go through the photos.  It’s like reliving moments that have completely slipped my mind.

 iPhoto – Quickly create stunning slideshows featuring both images and videos.  You can easily drag and drop all the media you want to add to the slideshow and iPhoto will do the rest.  You can add music and narrative to make your slideshow more Mike Leonard and put the beauty of everyday life on display.  My wife’s Aunt and Uncle made us a slideshow like this of our wedding.  We watch it on our anniversary every year.  We stream it from our computer to our AppleTV.

iMovie – A little more involved than iPhoto but more robust, edit the videos you’ve saved over the year into one Mike Leonard style film.  Add narrative, music, and a clever mix of the audio from the videos to create a life long memory.

We’ve all experience those moments in life where you just take a deep breath, close your eyes, and do your best to make sure this moment never leaves you.  That’s the beauty of everyday life but unfortunately, as time passes the moment does just that, it slips away.  Using these tools, you can create amazing memories to relive time and time again.

With the Holidays just around the corner what memories are you looking forward to capturing?

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