Sunday, December 18, 2011

Quatrain #16: Winter Solstice

The shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere occurs this week. It's one of my favorite moments on the calendar because it represents a pivot point of dark and light. What I like about the darkness is that it gives me the perfect reason to ponder goals and strategies for the upcoming year, but it also gives me the time to think about what's occurred over the previous year.

So when I began to survey the last sixteen weeks to determine the project outcome, I kept wondering further instead of feeling any distinct sense of closure, which is what I anticipated. I mean, based on what I wrote in Quatrain #1, this was to be the last of the series, but now I'm not so sure, because there is a lot of satisfaction in producing these works. So, why stop now? Well, I realized that in order to continue with these constructions I simply need time to produce another critical mass of images, before I can produce another series of quatrains. This is based mostly on statistical odds you see, because it's not often that I have a situation resembling this one. In fact, I have to say that I've never had a situation quite like this before.

The first sixteen Quatrains are constructed from over 1,500 images captured over roughly fourteen months, which were edited down to about 250, and then edited down to the final 64 of the series. That's sort of like having a .042 batting average! Not exactly something to brag about, but just the same, that's the reality of being a visual artist, and many of my teachers reinforced the idea by expressing that one can never shoot too much.

As a matter of coincidence, and a great way to bookend the series, is the fact that my fireplace mantel, included above, is actually one of the first images I can point to when the collection began to take its form. And that opens the perfect segue to the winter solstice, which for me is a celebration of light, since it is from that day until June 21st on the summer solstice, that each day gets gets just a little bit longer than the previous one. Among others, that is a great thing to look forward to.

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