Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Breath a soul into the newly formed...

Sunrise over Jenness Pond 10/27/10
“Be pleased yet once again to come
 down and breathe a soul into 
the newly formed, fragile film
 of matter with which this day 
is to be freshly clothed.” 
(Quote by French paleontologist Teilhard de Chardin)


Photograph taken at Cape Cod summer of 2010

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Hidden Hand of the Marketplace



The Hidden Hand of the Marketplace

Fishermen in the beginning of time
Sacrificed a symbol of themselves to The Great Spirit
Praying for the welfare of the fish
Who sustained them and gave their life meaning
Within The Great Web of Life.

Fishermen at the end of time
Sacrifice all the fish to the great god of Moolah
Praying to get paid back enough bucks
To keep afloat and survive another month
Without being washed up on the beach with the fish–
Yet another victim of the Hidden Hand of the Marketplace.
––––––––––––––––––––––
This photomontage consists of three photographs, two of which I took this summer: The first is of a blue fisherman glove that washed up on the beach at Fort Foster in Kittery. The second is a wild ocean shot I took on Cape Cod. I got permission to use the third photo, the image of the fish skeleton, from Dreamstime.com.

I’m sorry about the gender bias.  It just didn’t fit the cadence to say fisher people or people who fish or people who live from the sea. And alternating fisherman and fisherwoman would have changed the meaning.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

In the end, everything returns to the earth

This photomontage is my second attempt to tell a story about my connection to a certain sugar maple tree. The first attempt was my last blog entry. You can see it by scrolling down or by clicking here: photograph with accompanying essay.  While the first image is visually accurate, it does not connect to the complex array of memories and emotions that this tree brings to life in me. Hence, my second attempt: the collage that you see above, which merges 15 different photographs, some taken for this project and some from the past.

I took several photographs of different trunks which had fallen off the sugar maple tree and were strewn around in various degrees of decomposition. To me they represents various stages of life. One of the trunks (seen at the bottom left of the collage) is turning to compost, ready to support lady slippers and maple flowers producing new life, while the leaves (on the bottom right) represent the obvious, the autumn of life.  Likewise, the photo on the left of me as a young child present the spring of life while the current self portrait represents again, the autumn of life.

Along the top half of the collage I wanted to show the stages of the old maple's life. Not having old photos of this tree, I took photographs of other maple trees which, in my mind's eye, looked like my old maple, going back in time, at various times of the year.

Finally, I needed a way to make a transition from the forest floor to the towering maples above. I chose to use photographs taken of stonewalls from elsewhere on my property; they not only fit seamlessly into the scene but are appropriate since I used to build them.

I merged three photographs of stonewalls in various degrees of disarray to show a progression from the rigid order of civilization to the flowing entropy of Mother Nature. Or, to put it differently: to show in the end that everything returns to the earth.