26 January 2015
Let me know which you prefer and why. Click on the image to enlarge.
Fundamentally, Mother Nature is abstract and concrete, complex and simple, bold and shy, fragile and strong, quiet and loud–she is the quintessential model for us to emulate. By brief or lengthy observation we can learn a continuum of truths, which we can infuse into our everyday lives as well as the life we hope to inhabit.
Much of my adult years have been spent as a voyeur of nature’s omnipresence. There is always a lesson to be tucked inside my heart and soul. There is always a meditative quality that eases the day. Mostly, I feel blessed to have such close access to her attributes.
But much is changing, and much is deeply bothersome. Still, I believe my hope is not an empty place, but a space of immense possibility for the planet’s recovery. The news is not all depressing.
In the Lens section are two images that represent the small in nature: those minute details that we see from afar. They take extra effort to delineate their character and contribution to the whole.
Each photograph is a tiny section of the frozen and defrosting pond that shirts my town’s reservoir. This site is relatively new, and created to assure that our community is prepared for water shortages. The pond is down the hill, covered in cattails and grasses, and almost like a sentinel watching the reservoir above.
The bubbles and ice are a sort of juxtaposition for what we have and might not have. Reports abound about creek beds lowering and rising; areas completely devastated by drought; seesaw weather patterns. The future of water is uncertain.
Still, where I live on in the Mid-Atlantic, USA, we’ve had an abundance of rainy weather, and our water table, for now, is overflowing its boundaries. We’re fortunate, very fortunate.
Tip of the Week: Robert Frank’s The Americans is probably one of the most influential photography books of the 1950s, and maybe even the most informative of the second half of the twentieth century about everyday Americans. Frank (born 1924 and became a naturalized citizen after immigrating) was so enamored with the American way of life that he travelled across the country amassing over 25,000 images. He chose eighty-three photographs to represent his historic journey, which became the essence of The Americans. His visual acuity was drawn to real life, not a sugar-coated version. This raw documentation of Americana eventually changed views of other photographers and the public. If you have not seen Frank’s work, please do. Here is a short podcast from NPR about an exhibition at the National Gallery of Art that celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of the publication of that book–a book that became a milestone in art history. From NPR: ‘Americans’: The Book that Changed Photography,” heard on 29 September 2014, runs 08:02 minutes. Click here for the Website. For additional information, turn to the National Gallery of Art’s site to delve deeper into his work. The Museum has a major collection of Franks’ work as a photographer and filmmaker, which includes the years 1937-2005.
In 2004 Frank said, “The kind of photography I did is gone. It’s old,” I couldn’t disagree more. His work inspires with an energy that prods a deeper look into his ability to see the invisible in daily living. He was a master of black and white and of the human condition.
View other entires for this week’s challenge:
As always I welcome comments about this post or any part of my blog.
If you’d like to join the Photo Challenge, please click here for details. If you have any questions, please contact me. Below is a reminder of the monthly schedule with themes for upcoming Photo Challenges:
1st Monday: Nature.
2nd Monday: Macro.
3rd Monday: Black and White.
4th Monday Challenger’s Choice (Pick One: Abstraction, Animals, Architecture, Food Photography, Night Photography, Objects, Portraiture, Still Life, Street Photography, and Travel).
5th Monday: Editing and Processing with Various Apps Using Themes from the Fourth Week.