long prickly shadows
i shot this photo after a long walk, at the tail end of the day, when the sun was nearly below the horizon. the long winter shadows were softened by the twilight, which still did not quite manage to soften the hooked needles of the cocklebur spines.
one twig eight ways
my natural sculpture project continues, with varying intensity depending on the day and my mood and the amount of dishes to be done. i am learning to understand the point at which twigs of different trees will bend without breaking, and eucalyptus has become one of my favorites to work with. i even noticed that its leaves resemble our willow leaves at home, a tree with similarly flexible branches and twigs. today’s experiment was to attach three branch tips back to their base, while still maintaining a pleasing, three dimensional shape. i’m happy enough with today’s work, and am increasingly excited about the wall where these are all hanging, and which is starting to accrete that exciting depth that i sometimes see in still blog, when no single image is necessarily a masterpiece, but the accumulated work has a heft and a meaning that exceeds its individual elements. stay tuned i guess. let’s see where this goes.
curved eucalyptus branches
yin and yang
there is something wise-seeming about an olive tree that is hundreds of years old. a friend who makes wine here recently transplanted two olive trees that were standing on the day, 500 years ago, when leonardo da vinci died. they are still here, gnarled and thick, listening to the sounds of traffic on the highway, and looking as if they understand all of the difficulty and sorrow of life. i thought that yin and yang, made of olive leaves, was maybe the correct symbol to acknowledge such calm in the face of the world.
olive leaves from our terrace: autignac, france
one beach five ways
every beach is different. our beach on the mediterranean looks like this. it looks nothing like the north shore of lake superior, or the gulf coast of florida, or the pacific beaches of northern california, nor the windswept beaches of brittany. those aren’t the only beaches i’ve seen in my life, but they are the ones i have spent enough time with to claim a little piece of them for myself. along “our” beach, just outside of sète, you will not find kelp like california. nor sand dollars like florida. i have found striped rocks and hermit crab shells, and sand dollars, and agates, and sea glass, and coral on beaches. but on none, not one, of all my beaches have i ever found terracotta roof tiles tumbled into ‘rocks.’
beach collections from the plage de la baleine, in sète, france
first thought best thought?
this was my first effort with these twigs. in the end, i think i preferred my second effort, which i posted yesterday on STILL blog. but it may be simply because the second one took more effort. so i’m having a hard time being objective. anyway, the point of today’s post is that i only just barely preferred my second try, and would have been happy with this one, because it has an energy that goes along with the improvisation of its creation. there’s a loose, fun, vibrant spirit to this composition that yesterday’s does not have. even more fun, i think some of you will prefer yesterday’s and some of you today’s. and you’re all right.
lichen-covered twigs from agde, france