As the fresh new snow blankets the ground and lays a layer of white powder on everything standing still, it feels like a permission for a new beginning. All is still, all is clean, all is white and a new chapter can now begin.
Yesterday the sun was shining as it still is today and the whole day, snowflakes shimmered in the sun, floating, dancing and eventually landing gently on surfaces, each in its unique glory.
Despite the bitter cold, I kept finding myself jumping up, grabbing my camera and heading outdoors to try and capture the magic of what was going on.
It’s always a good time to restart a blog, but there is something more compelling about living through:
a global pandemic
a general breakdown of norms as we know them
an increase in conductivity (trust me on that)
incredibly strange weather patterns
varied degrees of lockdown measures
living vicariously through my photographic archived memories
becoming great friends with my teenage daughter
a complete change of domestic circumstance
a complete halt on all travel plans and viewing humans as 2 dimensional beings through Zoom.
adding a whole new set of skills to my arsenal (Motion Graphics)! (More on that soon)
Yesterday I decided to just go see what other people are doing during this almost 10 days of unusual arctic temperatures in Germany. So after spending one hour trying to remove thick ice from the car, I made it on the icy roads to Duesseldorf, to find joyful people, walking in the bright sun, on white frozen snow, next to a Rhein River in high tide, some masked, some not and I was in awe of finding out how much I missed people in general, the passing conversations with strangers and the funny smiles I get when I perform my weird acrobatics to get strange angled shots.
Great weather has been our blessing here in the North-Western part of Germany since the lockdown over Covid19 began a few weeks ago. Mild weather, Spring bursting with color, birds chirping loudly and clear skies that go on for miles. That all somehow seems to soften the blow of the sad news of death and illness coming from all parts of our beautiful globe.
Last night was the second night of the super pink moon and I mustered the stamina to get out to the fields at moonrise to catch a glimpse, feel and an image of this beautiful phenomenon. I waited in the deserted dark field outside of our neighborhood for over two hours waiting and wondering if the moon has forsaken us. It was a clear sky shimmering with stars, but no moon to be seen. I called my friend Donna in New York to make sure she really saw it last night and that was a special moment connecting across the globe and chatting about our spinning sphere and the other spheres around it.
To make a long story concise, there was one single cloud and the moon was playing hide and seek behind it giggling and keeping me in quarantine in the dark field. I did some fun light painting as I waited and then chased the moon for a glorious half-hour as it emerged mimicking an orange sun. What a great reminder of how small we are and how beautiful our world is and how much there is still to explore.
Here are some images, some of just the moon in its showing off phase, and others are fun manipulations that I was tempted to create.
The fear of being alone~ we all have it to some extent, the great anxiety that we will have no one to share our moments with, good or bad, the whole time forgetting that we are born alone and we die alone.
Maybe we should take a moment everyday to enjoy, value and make use of our own company, learning to meet and know ourselves a little better.
I once practiced a month of silence and discovered among many things that there was so much to be learned inside of the human complex I learned to call ”me”.
Who can be sure that the future is a continuation of and a consequence of the now? Could it be that the future is arriving independently of all what has been and that is?
Isn’t every dawn a new fresh beginning and a new permission for a brand new future?
Do we decide our future or is it predestined?
Is the answer hidden in the future and any answer that we arrive at today is already condemned to be in the past?
And what about light? What lives in the ever changing light?
Today I took this iphone photo of a tree outside my parents in law’s home where we are gathered for Christmas and I showed it to my sister in law. The light had a haunting quality in that moment that made me stand still in utter awe.
She ran out to the window and said to me “you must have magicked your image, it does not look like that!”
The truth is it did look like that and so much more but light doesn’t wait. It moves and evolves and radiates differently with every passing moment. Light is alive that way.
Musing last from an enchanted Christmas Day in the German countryside.
Europe loves its Christmas Markets, the festive mood, the warm drinks cuddled by cold hands, the delicious smells of roasted almonds and the magical lights that chase away the darkness of winter. From the first advent till the winter solstice, people try to spend as much time as possible out in the markets calling on hope, warmth and light to comfort them through the long hard winters.
In the last 2 weeks I went with my camera and some fellow photographers chasing the Christmas spirit from Valkenburg in the Netherlands to Duesseldorf and then today to magical Cologne.
The seasons have a magical way of easing us into the inescapable reality that time passes and waits for no one. Before the grey starkness of winter, we are flooded by a gush of warm color to keep us hopeful for the coming of spring. Nature is the best artist.
I think the beat way to feel the souls of a place is to meet it at a magical moment, a time when something as common as night surrendering to day never fails to amaze us. Every time that I witness a sunrise, it seems as if I gained a chunk of time, a bonus bit of living that would otherwise have been lost to me.