Sunday, February 21, 2010

Daily Practice 52/365

Title: "Refraction through a Veil of Tears"
(click on image to see larger)

Ruth Bernhard would stress to her students the importance of light, encouraging them to study its qualities and effects on subjects. One of her workshop directions to students was to make an image within 10 feet of their bed. A friend of mine recently took this idea and did a "10X10X10" project: she made a single image within 10 feet of her bed for 10 straight days. The images had a strong cohesiveness and many took advantage of specific qualities of light within that rather small radius. A former assistant to Ruth Berhnard recalled a field trip to Point Lobos, where Ruth marked out a 20 foot square area and investigated it intensely with her eyes and camera. At the end of the day she left with some fine images and many samples of shells and rocks that she had collected. Imagine how satisfied an experience she would have had compared to the many who roam far and wide around an area like Point Lobos, spending more time flitting from place to place than actually seeing, observing and making images.

This morning I was facing the prospect of a fairly busy day, wondering when I might have time to do my daily practice. While contemplating this situation, I noticed that the early morning sun was making this unusual refraction pattern on the wall of the shower. Thinking about Bernhard's ideas of the quality of light, and looking within a short radius of where one finds oneself, I grabbed the camera to make this image.

1 comment:

Carol Mikkelson said...

I just stumbled on your blog. Love the "Daily Project." I also enjoyed reading about Ruth Bernhard. I took a workshop with her (must have been around 25 years ago.) Something she said has stuck with me over the years. It is a quote from the children's book The Little Prince by Anton Du Exupery. I may have spelled the authors name wrong? The quote..."It is only with the heart that one can see rightly, what is essential is invisble to the eye."