Friday, September 22, 2017

Kaleidoscope of Sight

Who knows where this will want to play.
Kaleidoscopes have always been one of my favorite things with their constantly shifting, never-ending possibilities of shape and color. It surprised me this morning when I discovered that one name for a group of butterflies is … kaleidoscope. A kaleidoscope of butterflies. I love that and it became the title of my latest painting, which had been originally called Tulip Abundance.

It made me think about how we see things. The world is a massive array of shapes and colors, constantly shifting and being shifted. If we turn the ring on a kaleidoscope, we see a whole new image, something never seen before, a view we’ll never see again in exactly the same way. If we shift our own perspective on the world, the same thing happens.

Sometimes I think my life has been a journey of sight, almost like The Wizard of Oz, from the land of black and white to the world of Oz where everything is in technicolor and everywhere you look, you see a horse of a different color.

Years ago, when I took my first digital collage class from Robert Masla in a tiny fishing village just south of Puerto Vallarta, he taught me to change the way I saw things and the way I took pictures … from scenes to elements that could be used in a larger collage. Suddenly, the number of photos I was taking doubled or tripled as everything … a key, a bird, or a tea bag … showed itself as a possibility for becoming part of a larger image.
Three Circles wound up in "Kaleidoscope of Butterflies"

The world became a different, bigger place where everything had potential and meaning. Something similar happened when I discovered the magic of Photoshop’s blend modes that allowed images to play together in completely unexpected ways. A peeling, painted wall behind or on top of an ordinary tree might become an otherworldly scene that would take my breath away in surprise and delight.

Once again, this changed the way I looked at things. Now, the only criteria for a photo has become … is it interesting? Does it have lines, shape, texture or color that might want to play with another image?

A week ago, a friend and I went to Tlaquepaque, a rather upscale shopping area in Guadalajara. While my friend bought an incredible dragon to protect her new home, my eyes immediately went to the “bits” that might play in future images … like the piece of material above and the other images scattered through this post.

Silver balls and reflections
Delight and possibilities are everywhere … new sights and gifts from this journey of photography.


1 comment:

  1. I love that you're having a ball--savoring a visual feast each and every day. Thanks for sharing your ever-shifting perspective.