Through the Trees
I've been immersed in books on writing lately. I've read Becoming a Writer by Dorothea Brande, If You Want to Write by Brenda Ueland, and, as I mentioned last week, Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg. All were beautifully written and all offered insightful tips on maintaining creative habits which were applicable across all artistic mediums. All three have emphasized one central theme which is to make time for your creative pursuit everyday. Even Jerry Uelsmann shared the same message with me 15 weeks ago.
As I reflected on my struggle last week, finding myself in a similar boat this week, I went back through Natalie Goldberg's Writing Down the Bones in search of a particular passage that resonated with me near the end. She had won a writing fellowship which allowed her a year and a half off to write. She then explains how she experimented with different times of day for periods of time, but the rhythm didn't stick. That's where I'm at! Although I wish I could say I was doing these edits everyday this week, but I can't. The point she made was to not get bogged down in what time of day you are creating, but to make time everyday to create regardless of the time of day.
I'm at the half-way mark now and I have to ask myself have I run out of ideas? Is this the end of the line? Is this why I've been dragging feet the past two weeks? Or have I fallen out of my habit of making enough creative time for myself? For this project? Admittedly I have I penchant for spinning plates in my life. There's so much to do and a living must be made. I look forward to the day when my time is completely my own, but for now I must adapt. How will I keep all my plates spinning? I have some ideas in mind as I move into the next week, but for now let's get on with week 26.
As I sat down to do my edits the idea of using a tree kept popping in my head. I tried the rendering approach which was ok, but it didn't sing. I started to think about the oak trees reflected in the water and thought why not use images of the oaks from Savannah? I went back through my photo library from the Savannah trip and came across this nice shot as the arms of the oak tree spread across the canvas. I loved the deep shadows on the branches accentuated by the backlighting, and intentionally brought those features out for more dramatic effects with my overlays. The results were visually striking.
#176 is bits of gold leaf speckled on the raw canvas.
#177 is witnessing the blue barely peak through a grim day.
#178 is a pyrograph with a tree burned into the raw.
#179 is green leaves on purple trees.
#180 is whitewashed trees on cold winter days.
#181 is reminiscent of cypress knees reflected in water or the edge of the forest as the light begins to shine between the tree trunks.
#182 is looking through a shop window. Is the tree inside or out?