Visual Reflections: Nature Photography in an Age of Uncertainty: No. 19 (Twilight’s Golden Touch on Lower Manhattan)

13 November 2017

Lens:

Taken in Camera+ and edited in Snapseed.

Twilight at the Museum of Jewish Heritage; All Rights Reserved 2017 Sally W. Donatello

Twilight’s Touch Upon the Museum of Jewish Heritage; All Rights Reserved 2017 Sally W. Donatello

Sunset in Lower Manhattan; All Rights Reserved 2017 Sally W. Donatello

Sunset in Lower Manhattan; All Rights Reserved 2017 Sally W. Donatello

Click onto each image to enlarge. Let me know which you prefer. Prints are available upon request.

Pens:

One cannot think of climate change without its partner the weather. And the weathering of our hearts is just as affected by the myriad of weather-related altercations that are becoming more and more prevalent, regardless of one’s location.

Yes, for me nature is the master of the universe. And yes, we must do everything to help rectify our own role in this historic and major twenty-first-century major human problem.

Each step of my journey nature provides creativity, inspiration, motivation and tranquility. Each day my spirit is enlivened, for example, with the mysterious magic and mystique of each sunset.

Last week my grandson and I explored one of his favorite places, the East River and the Battery where water and land blend as well as interact with human nature to reveal Lower Manhattan. We arrived for the light show and its performance was extraordinary. We were entranced by the mood, the golden beams, the light gliding over buildings, the landscape illuminated and the river transformed.

We lingered as the light show doubled and tripled its coverage. Suddenly inland structures were golden palaces from ancient history. Everything was embellished and redefined with the touch of that glorious sunset. Nature provides and we are compelled to dive into her offerings. The duality of day and night with its light and dark are obvious, and still the scene riveted our senses.

We paused, we watched, we embraced our good fortune.

Note:

More than five years ago I indulged in a course about Ikebana: the art of Japanese flower arrangement. It was not for the love of rules, but the eye of the practitioner that enticed my interest. I was reminded of this experience as I read the article, “The Rise of Modern Ikebana” (by Deborah Needleman and published in The New York Times’ T Magazine on 06 November 2017).

Here is an excerpt: “One thing, however, that unites all the innovations and developments that ikebana has seen over the centuries is a search for balance between opposites. Ikebana is, fundamentally, an exploration of the frictions between the visible and the invisible, life and death, permanence and ephemerality, luxury and simplicity.”

And the final paragraph especially resonates with me: “like all living arts, ikebana changes and is informed by the culture and the times; what makes ikebana especially poignant and potent in this moment is its direct and personal connection to nature, its awareness of and emphasis on decay in an era in which our own ecological and environmental ruin feels more vivid than ever. A cherry blossom in bloom will soon be gone. But for this instant, it’s ours — and while it is, who among us can turn away from it?” To read the entire article and view examples of the art, click here.

Ikebana’s approach to the spare is very much the space that makes me feel calm and restful. Still, I loosely apply its tenets, bending to my own intuition and visual field.

 

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32 Responses to Visual Reflections: Nature Photography in an Age of Uncertainty: No. 19 (Twilight’s Golden Touch on Lower Manhattan)

  1. Pingback: Questions on growth & power in a weather-worn world | through the luminary lens

  2. Thanks Sally, for these reflections. As being a student of building technology, for me Twilight’s touch is an absolutely stunning image of the Jewish Museum of Heritage. It is as if the structure is pointing – to who knows what?

    Then you begin with these words – “One cannot think of climate change without its partner the weather. And the weathering of our hearts is just as affected by the myriad of weather-related altercations that are becoming more and more prevalent, regardless of one’s location”. So true indeed!

    I was wondering if you would allow me to quote this, with a credit to you and a link to this post. I’d like to add your words to a comprehensive blog post I’m currently working on. It’s about the rapidly accelerating new renewable energy technologies and how this may, or rather is, positively effecting humanity, the earth and climate change.

    Such gratitude you have as you pause with your grandson. “We paused, we watched, we embraced our good fortune.” With hope and faith, in this “age of uncertainty.”

    Good cheers – Bruce

  3. Tina Schell says:

    I suppose I am in the minority this week Sally, as I am drawn to your second shot. I like the vast feel of the water leading to the golden city. Headed there to be with family next week – always look forward to a place so very different from my normal haunt!

  4. thirdeyemom says:

    Beautiful Sally! How wonderful to spend that time with your grandson. Hope he enjoys photography and nature as much as you!

  5. pattimoed says:

    Thanks for the great images and post about Ikebana. I didn’t know about it. Fascinating. I love the Japanese minimalist philosophy. Have a great week, Sally!

  6. Su Leslie says:

    These are both beautiful images Sally, but I keep being drawn back to the first. That golden curve is so joyful. Thank you too for the article link. I admire much of Japanese design and visual philosophy. 🙂

  7. Lignum Draco says:

    Beautiful photos, Sally. The NYC skyline is impressive and I photographed it recently from 3 sides. 🙂 Yes, weather is all important and we need to realise our effect on it.

  8. These are such different photos, Sally, that I couldn’t pick one over the other. I love the lines and colors in the first and the drama of the second. The difference between the light and dark is excellent in both. Happy Monday.

    janet

  9. Both photos have their own beauty but I really like the skyline.

  10. Amy says:

    The golden touch is striking! We all say and believe we must do something, but we don’t really make the effort… sadly to say.

  11. smilecalm says:

    well crafted aspirations
    to rescue man & nature, Sally!
    something contemplative
    in shadowy wind waves 🙂

  12. DG MARYOGA says:

    Both photos are strikingly attractive,Sally,but I am totally entranced by the gilded building of the museum,it looks as if Midas touched it.

  13. You are so right, we, human beings, must find a way to rectify all the damage our modern society have cause to Earth and Mother Nature. You capture some really beautiful light in the two images.

  14. Allan G. Smorra says:

    Your first photo is a real attention-getter, Sally. I like your POV and the effect of the GH lighting.

    Thanks for the link to the NYT’s article about ikebana. I didn’t have a name for it prior to your post, but I knew it when I saw it all these years. I like the “less is more” philosophy—easy to say, difficult to do well—which leads me to your second photo. Your use of the water below, and the clouds above, the skyline presents a visual feast on a platter for our eyes. Well done.

    Have a wonderful week,
    Ω

  15. Two extraordinary pictures! The sunset picture has an ominous, mysterious vibe.

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