What is the spiral anyway?
The Golden Spiral is a mystical shape that is an absolute in both abstract mathematics and chaotic nature. It was first discovered by Phythagoras… The Phythagoreans loved this shape for they found it everywhere in nature: the Nautilus Shell, ram’s horns, milk in coffee, the face of a Sunflower, your fingerprints, our DNA, and in the shape of the Milky Way.
From the point of view of physics, spirals are lowest-energy configurations which emerge spontaneously through self-organizing processes in dynamic systems.
There is something about lighthouses that has universal appeal. Perhaps it is that they are a symbol of light and hope.
My contribution to http://wheresmybackpack.com/2013/12/06/travel-theme-symbol/
Līgo Haibun Challenge – Quote Prompt
Harmony makes small things grow, lack of it makes great things decay. – Sallhust
As my ten year old son marvelled over fantastical machines created for the Mad Max movies, I contemplated a long line of washing machines stretching out across the grey desert sands. They stood beside a row of ancient mangled stoves painted in pastel hues of pale green, baby blue and creamy yellow. These visions of domestic harmony decayed now in graceless lumpedness beneath a leaden sky. In my fantasies of the desert, I had imagined cobalt blue skies and red earth not discarded movie props and abandoned relics of failed attempts at domesticity.
According to the guide books, the owner of the outdoor museum we were visiting scoured the surrounding desert and dragged his findings back to display them here at Silverton, the last outpost of civilization on the edge of the emptiness of Australia’s interior. What the guide books had not explained was that much of the interior consists of grey spinifex stretching into an infinity of nothingness beneath the heavy grey skies that mark the build up to the wet season.
The Mad Max movies were filmed out in desert beyond Silverton during a dry season back in the 80s. The weird, sculptural machines of that dystopian vision had been left behind to subside into the sand when shooting finished. No doubt, the entrepreneurial museum owner felt he’d struck gold when he happened upon them. Certainly my son thought so, for I could not drag him away and stood now contemplating defunct household appliances while he examined every riveted joint of the Meccano like creations.
It came to me as I waited that it was fitting that I should find myself staring at the detritus of failed domestic endeavours. Earlier that day I had gazed out into the desert and realized it would be foolish to continue driving out into nowhere. It was time to go back to the shattered remains of my own domestic existence, pick up the pieces and attempt to grow them into some new harmonious form.
I’ve been experimenting with HDR on black and white photos. I doesn’t work for all shots but I love the highly detailed effect on these photos of old buildings. It’s so tactile. (The photos were taken in Turkey)
My contribution to http://ceenphotography.com/2013/12/04/cees-black-white-challenge-buildings/
After my outburst this morning I thought I’d better restore some calm to my blog. While the technicalities of WordPress sometimes lead me to wanting to pull my hair out I do love manipulating images in Photoshop. Here’s my latest efforts.
The main problem with this activity is knowing when to stop.
It’s easy to go too far then loose and loose all critical abilities. I no longer have any idea if this image works or not.
WordPress has got too complicated. I tried to follow the directions on how to put pretty pictures of posts in my archives at the top of my blog. The result – I ended up with a splitting headache and a blog theme I don’t particularly like. I can no longer find the previous theme I was using which I liked but am now confronted with a mind boggling display of blog themes, most of which cost mega dollars. I can not head or tail of the complicated instructions as to how make posts sticky or customize widgets. My head is spinning, my eyes are aching and it’s all just too much. I used to enjoy mucking around changing aspects of my blog’s appearance. Not any more. IT’S TOO HARD.
The issue is complicated by the fact that my internet connection is erratic and I’m way behind on following up on ‘likes’. So sorry if I have neglected to visit your blog recently. It’s all I can do to keep up with comments right now. Even there I have a bad feeling I have neglected to reply to some.
The whole WordPress world is getting on top of me. All I want is a simple blog that’s easy to read and displays photos and art work well… Is that asking too much WordPress?
When I was in Spain I heard a tour guide say ‘Today we’re going to an ABC – another bloody cathedral.’ All the ornate decorations, religious art, weeping Mary’s and gold and silver religious icons began to blur together in my mind. Looking at my photos now I have no idea where most of them were taken or why. I’ve been processing them in Photoshop to create images that reflect my experience.
This is one of the few photos that I can actually identify as a specific place. It’s the cathedral in Seville. I’ve processed it with HDR toning for it suits the content of the image.
This week Kellie Elmore provides us with the image below as a writing prompt- too good an opportunity to miss.
When Annabel was a child she talked to bears. Well one bear actually but she could remember it distinctly. She’d found it sitting in a corner of her grandma’s roof garden. She was staying there because her mother was ill and in hospital. When she grew up she learned her mum had ‘mental health issues’ but as a child all Annabel knew was that her mother was often ill and that she, Annabel was often sent to stay with grandma.
Her grandma was some kind of urban nomad and frequently moved from one house to another and one suburb to another in a way that Annabel found perplexing. She never knew just where she’d end up when she got sent to grandma’s.
The time Annabel talked to the bear her grandma lived in a rambling, crumbling house in the dry bush that fringed the outer suburbs. It was a hot summer and the leaves and twigs cracked beneath their feet as she and her grandmother made the long trek down to the shops to buy supplies. Grandma worried about the heat and the chances of bushfire. ‘I’ve got to get out here,’ she mumbled as she brushed away the cloud of flies that had congregated around her floppy yellow hat. Annabel knew then that the next time she got sent to grandma’s she’d go to some other house in some other suburb.
Perhaps it was this sense of transience that made the visit to grandma’s house in the bush all that more intense. The setting was so unlike the barren expanse of the new housing estate where Annabel lived with her mother and her father, a jovial yet somehow remote man who was often away on business. Grandma’s place in the bush had been designed to blend in with the landscape and the roof garden where Annabel found the bear jutted out into the tree canopy. Annabel saw the bear sitting in the shadows at the back of the garden. He was a very friendly bear and he and Annabel had a long chat about the oddity of a grandma who moved around every six months or so, a mother who spent half her life in hospital and a father who disappeared on business for weeks at a time. It was a very satisfying conversation that put Annabel’s mind at rest.
‘There’s no accounting for the behaviour of grownups,’ the bear told her. ‘Your best bet is to just to accept things the way they are.’
Annabel agreed and made her way back down to the kitchen where her grandma was rattling dishes around in the sink. When asked what she’d been doing Annabel spoke about the bear. Her grandma gave her an odd look. ‘There’s no bear on my roof,’ she said. She sounded kind of angry so Annabel decided then and there to keep things like conversations with bears to herself from then on. Grownups were so unpredictable and got angry at the strangest things.
It was a lesson she never forgot. When she grew up herself she discovered a lot of the mysteries she had encountered as a child had a rational explanation but conversations with bears on rooftops was something people still didn’t want to know about. She kept the story to herself until she learned about vision quests and earth magic and other stuff too strange to be discussed in most suburban living rooms. On her first vision quest she met people who called themselves shamans and spiritual healers. They were people who saw beyond the veils of logic and straight into worlds where spirit bears reassured lonely, frightened children. For the first time in her life Annabel felt she’d come home to a place she could rely on.