WQWWC #43 – Imaginary imagery

“What we imagine in our minds becomes our world…”  Masaru Emoto

Masaru Emoto and his water crystals:

“Water consciousness first gained international attention with the unconventional but groundbreaking experiments of Japanese researcher Masaru Emoto. While you may not recognise his name, chances are that you have seen or heard of his work – namely, the theory that water can understand and retain the energy of human intention.


“In the 1990s, Emoto performed a series of experiments in which water was kept in a variety of bottles, each carrying a label with a different message. The messages ranged from positive and caring (thank you, love) to negative (I hate you, I want to kill you), and then drops of water from these bottles were placed on slides and deep-frozen to form snowflake-like crystals. 


The crystals that formed on positive messages were found to be ore geometric and aesthetically pleasing, while the crystals fired  by water with negative messages were chaotic  and non-uniform in shape.“ He called his findings ‘hado’ – the life force energy-consciousness of varying frequencies infused in all matter.

The follow-up argument has been this: Given the high water composition of the human brain and body,  if water is in fact conscious and receptive to energy frequencies, how can these positive or negative messages affect our bodies on a molecular level?”

Was this a self-fulfilling prophecy – just imagine it and it becomes real?  Or is it an example of the creative force of the imagination?


What a rabbit hole I dived down into here –  it was almost a wishing well of watery wonderment. My imagination was definitely working overtime.


And it made me wonder….

Is it better to live in an imaginary world or in this harsh real world? I guess that depends on how happy and satisfying your own experience of the ‘real’ world is.  And even if your current reality is not yet the best, escaping into an imaginary world can be both restorative and healing. Or it can be if you just let yourself be free to imagine.


Throughout my life, retreating from time to time into the imaginary world of books has been a constant relief from the trials and tribulations of daily life. Immersing oneself into another world creates imaginary images within our minds, and sets the mind free to dream; and it encourages creative thinking.  

You can’t depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus”  Mark Twain

As a photographer, I use my imagination to first visualise my story then try to recreate my vision into the image. Finding the best point of focus is part of the storytelling but sometimes  I purposefully throw the focus out to create my vision. And yes that might make it hard to focus my eyes but I can depend on my imagination instead. It is such a delight when I create an intriguing image using Intentional Camera Movement (ICM), or compositing several images to create a new story. 

So many things to ponder in my imagination and yet….   in the words of the imaginary Dr Who

I’ll just be a story in your head. But that’s alright. We’re all stories in the end. Just make it a good one.” – Doctor Who

#SundayStills – Spring has sprung

Nothing says Spring to me as much as the daffodils and blossoms bursting forth and shining bright all around me.

Except maybe the territorial Tui who tumble and savour their way through the kowhai trees, sipping nectar from the yellow flowers.

Territorial Tui tumbling through the trees, 
One flies in and the other flees,
Sipping on the nectar,
Flying near and far.

It is such a delight 
To see them take flight
Soon they will build a nest 
To prove which bird is the best.


https://secondwindleisure.com/photography/sunday-stills-photo-challenge/

All that glitters is gold (to me)

Gold must be the flavour or favour of the month. The topic for both this week’s Sunday Stills and for Life in Colour –  September is gold. I thought I would combine the two to see where it goes. 

Gold in the sky, 
Gold in the sand, 
Gold in the architecture 
Gold in the sea!
All that glitters is gold to me!

Way back in the days when we could -and did – travel internationally, I visited historic buildings and saw golden statues glittering within the cloisters and altars  of churches, and the museums displaying the gilded treasures of history.


It starts with golden entrances, and continues through churches and museums that glitter with gold.  

Windows and water features reflecting the precious glitter of gold.

Whilst I enjoy the glittering history, my favourite golden hues are still found in nature.

Sunday Stills – Going Back in time

Going back in time, I found this intriguing photo  amongst my travel memories, It was an interesting way to tell the time, at least in the afternoon.

“In the centre of the Old Town Square in Prague, there is  a line on the cobblestones. At the start of the line, which is called Prague Meridian until 1918 stood a huge Marian Column. The shadow from the column fell on the meridian and locals could check the time. The Latin inscription on the Prague meridian says: «Meridianus quo olim tempus pragense dirigebatur», which means “In the afternoon you can see the exact time in Prague.”

Going back into family history brings memories alive again. Delving through the old photos and memorabilia of earlier times reminds us of how life must have been then back then.  Learning about our history also teaches us how to look forward. The baby in the middle photo is the great grandfather of my granddaughter is holding a photo of the grand uncle who is also pictured in the photo on the wall.

This week Aotearoa/New Zealand has been celebrating Te Wiki o Te Red Maori/Maori Language Week. I thought it timely to share this whakatauki/proverb which is also about going back so you can move forward in strength. 

Titiro whakamuri

Kokiri whakamua


Look back and reflect

so you can move forward

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #165: Going Wide expands my appreciation

 A wide angle lens was the choice I made to capture the magnificent views of New Zealand’s mountains, lakes and valleys.


Man-made structures also look spectacular when viewed with a wide angle.

Leaving the mountains, it was time to appreciate the wide views that form the coastline and islands at the top of the South Island where the river meets the sea.

Wide angle lens truly expands my appreciation.

Lhttps://lagottocattleya.wordpress.com/2021ake/09/14/lens-artists-photo-challenge-165-going-wide/

Sunday Stills – Colourful murals tell stories

Murals tell stories all around the world – these are two of the stories I found in my travels.  It is hard to believe that so many life-changing events have happened within my lifetime. 


I was inspired by the murals that appeared following the Christchurch earthquakes in 2010 and 2011. Amidst the devastation and destruction of so many buildings there were some walls still standing. These became locations for sharing messages of hope, and a bit of humour too.  

Other murals remind us of world changing events.  

The Berlin Wall was built in 1961, creating such division across families, across countries and across the political divide. Throughout the world the ramifications were felt, and then it was brought down.

The stories painted on the walls during and post the Berlin wall tell stories of despair but then hope.

 

Living in a world of colourful murals gives me hope for the future.

The Changing Seasons – August (and a bit of July thrown in)

It started in mid-July with an extreme weather storm event on the West Coast and Marlborough regions. Roads were so badly damaged with many slips, slumps, under and onto the two main roads into the Marlborough Sounds, they were impassable for most of the residents and those of us that could drive out had to negotiate muddy unstable roads.

August arrived and whilst the roads were still closed, some of our quiz team could make it to our local tavern. We were very organised for the 70s dress up theme – and the questions. We won by a big majority – probably something to do with the average age of our team. We had lots of general and specific knowledge of the 1970s. After all, it was a great decade dedicated to music, movies and fashion, and we had all lived through it. One of us had even been to the ABBA museum and sung Dancing Queen as the 5th member of the group.

We socialised at dinner parties and popped into the tavern again to watch the rugby.  I prepared and printed our community newsletter at the local school. Chopping up several fallen trees and mulching the smaller branches occupied my significant other for most of the month – when it wasn’t raining and blowing some more. 


Due to the road closures, I had already been having a couple of SeniorNet committee meetings via Zoom so when I got the invite to join a zoom workshop on how to make stop motion animations, I thought – why not?  That was fun. 

After an eye check in Blenheim on Tuesday, we stocked up on groceries, had a meal in Picton then carefully negotiated the wrecked roads towards home, and settled in to watch the tv news……. And then came the Delta variant of Covid-19. 


Suddenly, overnight New Zealand went into Level 4 lockdown. Not only were we locked in by closed roads, we were now locked down as well. We had to cancel dental and car service appointments as we hunkered down to stop the spread. At least we had sufficient food, beer and wine for a couple of weeks – oh – and toilet paper! 


Whenever was I going to be able to get my new spectacle lens fitted? Last year’s lockdown resulted in the dental appointment being cancelled too. Bad timing I guess.

Still, we are luckier that most. We still have the beach to walk on, and that dreaded exercycle was put back into regular use. After half an hour panting and pushing those pedals, I reward myself with a dabble in my art journal, and listen to some of that 1970s music.

Painting, sketching, writing and photography are back on my lockdown project list. And reading – lots and lots of reading – and maybe some more writing.  

I am grateful for not being too affected by the current lockdown but I certainly feel for all the essential workers, the home-schooling parents and those who are being impacted financially and emotionally. 


As September arrives, our road is still closed to the public and residents drive in and out at their own risk. Another zoom meeting, this time with the road recovery team, informed us that the road repairs are likely to be ongoing for several months. We have had to make a decision about cancelling this season’s homestay bookings. Our guests cannot use the road whilst it is closed to the public. I guess this means we may have time to enjoy summer ourselves this season. There is always a silver lining.

And the silver lining is – that 70s music!  – I am so very excited this week to hear the best news – ABBA are back and the words of their new song ‘Don’t shut me down’ speak to me ….

"I'm like a dream, within a dream, that's been decoded, 
I'm fired up, I'm hot, don't shut me down”

Needless to say, this song is on repeat on my playlist.  If you haven’t heard or seen it yet check it out but be warned – its already addictive for me. Enjoy!

So despite all the doom and gloom of July and August, September is springtime in the southern hemisphere – a time of renewal -and there is always HOPE and ABBA to look forward to.

https://bushboy.blog/2021/09/01/this-is-august-2021/

WQWWC -38, Education, Schools or Learning for life

Education is not a preparation for life; education is life itself”  – John Dewey

So where do schools fit in with this concept? Do we need schools so we can be educated?

 
During last year’s lockdown, learning was delivered online, and parents became their teachers. Our most recent and very sudden lockdown happened so fast, that schools have not yet had the time to deliver the laptops to the students. Overnight  the population were in Level 4 – locked down with no access to schools – but there is still education and learning.


Looking at my grandchildren’s experiences last year, it appeared that the learning was vastly different yet somehow more holistic. They learned science through numerous baking experiments, social skills through having to share the dining table to do their schoolwork, and they learnt to work together peacefully ( well most of the time).

‘Knowledge is a process, not a product”  – Ruth Nanda Anshen

Its all about the process – As an early childhood educator, I adhered to this notion of the importance of the process (free unstructured play) over the product. As educational institutions became more prioritised on standardized tests to assess educational outcomes at the expense of dispositional learning, it sucked the joy out of teaching for the love of learning. 


Leaving the pressures of formalised education behind on retirement, it still took me several years to regain my love of lifelong learning based on my passions, interests and strengths. 


So one day I started playing again. Exploring my repressed energies and setting free my creativity through art. I began putting my fingers into the paint as it were… Am I in my second childhood already?  Yes and No. Whatever it may be, I am enjoying my creative processes again. 

“ To be able to be caught up into the world of thought- that is to be educated”  Edith Hamilton

To think or not to think –  therein lies the learning…  I’m still thinking, and I’m still learning. And it is still fun. The best part is that I am sharing this sense of fun. achievement and the learning of new skills with my granddaughter via FaceTime or text messages now we are in lockdown again.

“That is what learning is. You suddenly understand something you’ve understood all your life, but in a new way” – Doris Lessing

https://alwayswrite.blog/2021/08/11/wqwwc-38

Life in Colour – RED as a messenger

“This month’s colour is red. One of the primary colours, red often indicates danger. It is pure energy, loud, demanding to be seen. Think of a red ladybird, a red rose, autumn leaves and a sunset. Passion. A heart.”

This made me think about how often red is used for sending important messages.


Red messages:

Red taillights warn that the car ahead is braking for some random reason.

Messages written in red remind us of the shameful past, but also offer some hope.

“The Heart has Eyes which the Brain knows nothing of” – Charles H Peckhurst

Reds in nature:

Fruity reds tempt the tastebuds – be warned though regular consumption can be addictive. 

Berry Red

Red in the landscape –  old red barns are a classic  but it doesn’t get old.

Rosebuds may open as pink, mature into a bright rich red, and yet then fade – a message of the cycle of life maybe?

Gardens both large and small grow vivid reds to brighten our days. We need to guard these precious displays.

"Red sky at night, sailors delight. 
Red sky in morning, sailors warning”

Sunlight rays passing through the atmosphere gift us amazing sunsets and weather warnings.

Red skies

But the question still remains – why are toolboxes predominantly red? 

Are tools that dangerous?

https://traveltalk.me.uk/2021/08/25/life-in-colour-25/

Lens Artists Photo Challenge #162 It’s all about the light

Remember: Always walk in the light.

And if you feel like you’re not walking in it, go find it.

Love the light.

Roberta Flack

From the glow of a misty morning moonset to the last rays of the setting sun, everywhere I wander I seek the light….

And I find light in the skies amidst the storms. 

I find the light hiding in the clouds…

Surprising me with its rainbow hues …

Lightly kissing the rolling hills …….

Silhouettes shining through the trees whilst reflections glimmer on the lakes….

I create my words and images to capture the light in my life.

https://travelsandtrifles.wordpress.com/2021/08/21/lens-artists-challenge-162-its-all-about-the-light/

Len