Carrying the beautiful with us.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

In my life I have occasionally met people who cannot see the good or the beautiful in anything they perceive. Although rare, I have always felt profoundly sorry for such individuals, because I can sense a deep emptiness inside them.

What you carry inside you will profoundly affect what you see when you travel out into the world to gather your images. Sure, I am well aware that there is lot’s of ugliness out there in the world, but I don’t want to carry that around within me. My view is that you will experience enough pain and ugliness in a lifetime that there is little need to go seeking it!

On the other hand, if you nurture peace and serenity in you mind and heart, it is truly amazing how much beauty you will find in our world.

Here is an image of two peaceful souls enjoying a warm, late fall day in central Oregon.

Enjoy,
Tom

“Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others.”

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others.” ~Jonathan Swift

This is also what makes each artist’s work unique, the particular way she/he views a particular place or thing. Each person is also affected emotionally in uniques ways by each and every experience. Vision is, therefore, a personal and individual experience; even so, you can be sure that there will be others that will relate to your own personal perception, if your work is honest and true, because it will be authentic and real.

Poppies, daisies & crows.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

I perhaps owe having become a painter to flowers.” ~Claude Monet

They are wonderful, flowers, but very difficult to image, with camera or paint and still do something original and interesting, that has not been done before. This image originated in the camera, but I took great liberties with it, unashamedly, I will add, as for me, as I have stated before the “image is the message,” I am very happy with this image of poppies, daisies and crows. I hope you will enjoy it also.

Enjoy,

Tom

Wilderness and experience.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

There are worlds of experience beyond the world of the aggressive man, beyond history, and beyond science. The moods and qualities of nature and the revelations of great art are equally difficult to define; we can grasp them only in the depths of our perceptive spirit.” ~Ansel Adams

These are the words of a man who has spent many hours in the depths of wilderness, in the same spirit of Thoreau and Muir. Having myself, grown up in the country, on a farm surrounded by thousands of acres of forrest, pastureland, swamps, streams, etc., I have a personal knowledge of what Mr. Adams speaks.

Even walking down a city street, I carry a bit of the wilderness inside. It has always been a compass and a guide. It also has made me keenly aware of how fragile the natural world is, and the necessity of protecting it from the constant greed of some of my fellow humans.

One problem is that those without an intimate knowledge of wild places and the creatures that inhabit them seem to regard it all as some sort of unnecessary oddity, hardly realizing that when we destroy the wild, we destroy ourselves, for it is the ground upon which we stand.

Youth and folly.

Monday, April 26, 2010

For God’s sake give me the young man who has brains enough to make a fool of himself!” ~Robert Louis Stevenson

It’s been said that we better be wild and liberal when we’re young, because the natural tendency is to become more conservative and cautious as we grow older, and although there are exceptions to the rule, I think generally this is true.

This is an image captured on a city street, evening coming on, cigarette in hand, plenty of angst.

Enjoy,
Tom

Art appreciation.

Friday, April 23, 2010

The trouble with music appreciation in general is that people are taught to have too much respect for music; they should be taught to love it instead.” ~Igor Stravinsky

Is this not a modern problem in all the arts? We love to respect, dissect, and analyze works of art, when we should be learning to feel and, as Stravinsky says, love it!

Although there is an intellectual element to all works of art, the main reason for its creation is to express. To make one feel, or see, often both, so to merely analyze it defeats the purpose of its creation and robs one of the experience intended by the artist.

Overlooking the bay/Camden Maine

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The subject matter is never a cliche; it is a simple fact of existence. Only the approach can make it boring or carry it beyond the ordinary. ~Alev Oguz

In this image, I used a classical asian technique of the vast landscape with a small human figure. It’s very powerful if you pull it off correctly. Here, you don’t even see the face of the spectator, never-the-less, you can almost enter her experience as she sits there taking in the beautiful, grand, and lively scene before her.

Enjoy,
Tom

The joy of maker and beholder.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

It has been said that art is a tryst, for in the joy of it maker and beholder meet.” ~Kojiro Tomita

How true this is. If anyone wanted to know me, they could easily find me in the works that I have created over the last 40+ years. One cannot help but put their essence, beliefs, hopes and dreams into their art. My work is my life. In it, you will find my reflection radiating outwards from it to the world at large. I create for myself, I create for the beholder, in some strange sense, we are one and the same, and this is part of the secret joy of working at what you love.

The Yellow Pail/On the seashore of endless worlds.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

On the seashore of endless worlds children meet.

The infinite sky is motionless overhead

and the restless water is boisterous.

On the seashore of endless worlds the children meet with shouts and dances.

They build their houses with sand and they play with empty shells.

With withered leaves they weave their boats

and smilingly float them on the vast deep.

Children have their play on the seashore of worlds.

They know not how to swim, they know not how to cast nets.

Pearl fishers dive for pearls, merchants sail in their ships,

while children gather pebbles and scatter them again.

They seek not for hidden treasures, they know not how to cast nets.

The sea surges up with laughter, and pale gleams the smile of the sea-beach.

Death-dealing waves sing meaningless ballads to the children,

even like a mother while rocking her baby’s cradle.

The sea play with children, and pale gleams the smile of the sea-beach.

On the seashore of endless worlds children meet.

Tempest roams in the pathless sky, ships get wrecked in the trackless water,

death is abroad and children play.

On the seashore of endless worlds is the great meeting of children. ~Rabindranath Tagore

I love this poem and feel it’s perfect for this image, captured on a beach on the Oregon coast. How perfect is the child’s world, before the concerns of the grownup world begin to crowd in.

Enjoy,
Tom


Enriching the world.

Monday, April 19, 2010

You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world, and you impoverish yourself if you forget that errand. ~Woodrow Wilson

Although the above quote applies to all people, it is especially relevant to  the artist. Life can be hard, and people are too busy merely caring for the welfare of their families. The artist must take the time to “smell the roses” and pass on that exquisite fragrance to the rest of the world!

The hope is that our work can enrich others live by enriching their environments with our images, their experience with our dance, music, film, and stories.

Truly, what would any civilization be without the arts? So lets not forget our errand, which is in truth, a rewarding, enjoyable and vital one.