Tag Archives: gray

Drops and Sand

Drops and Sand is a recent photographic work that intensifies the use of texture in photographic art.  Indeed, this piece is an interesting macro shot of the top layer of sand found on the beach during a rainstorm.

The black specs found in the sand challenges the viewer to accept the randomness that nature offers us in our everyday lives.  But, as much as the black shows up against the light gray backdrop of the sand itself, the specks are not the commanding feature.

The unusual subject of the photograph that nurtures and cultivates our attention is the strange moon like craters randomly appearing throughout the work.  It’s the 3 dimensional appearances of these craters that allow us to really notice the texture of the sand.

These craters give us the opportunity to add a physical Drops and Sandfeel for what would otherwise be a flat surface.   When shown together the sand and the craters let our minds form suggestions of how the sand feels under our fingertips.

Another reason that helps our minds check the sands coarseness is the many small shards of shells and water worn pebbles that also are randomly washed into the sand.  Each of these pebbles and shells has a separate color than that of the gray sand in which it lies buried.

Finally, from a decorative or different artistic point, the pebbles also allow us to match this picture more easily with any wall we may wish to hang it on.  Because the pebbles are so small, the color of the rocks looks diminished by the gray found in the sand.

However, if you were to place an earth toned colored matting around the picture you would find that color being brought out in the sand.  The same with using blue-tinted matting.

This matting would further cause the sand to appear even more bluish gray.  In essence, this use of colored matting would work, as a catalyst to bring out the color the decorator would like to highlight.  It is very multifunctional.

Like what you read about The Devil’s Flower?

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Gray is the New Sexy

When people think of the pumpkin, the color gray is not the first thing that comes to mind.  Instead, most Americans quickly point at the traditional orange and green pumpkin as the pumpkin of choice for decorating and pie making needs.  But there is a new look in town.  It’s slim, smooth and gray, and it’s here to dominate the pumpkin patch.  While the red and orange pumpkins all scream look at me! The gray pumpkin is that cool customer that blends in with the locals and radiates style.

 

Brought all the way from Australia comes the Jarrahdale heirloom pumpkin. They are available in sizes from 10 to 120 lbs. and keep well outdoors.  This makes them a perfect decorator pumpkin.  You could make a Jack-o-lantern out of it or even paint yours a decorative holiday theme.  But, from what I’ve seen you would miss out on the best part of this pumpkin variety.

 

These sexy gray pumpkins obviously sport a nice smooth exterior that ranges blue to gray in color.  It’s the orange to yellow-green interior that commands the attention.  The flesh from this pumpkin tends to be thick, dry, sweet and contain no stringy fibers.    Bakers will immediately recognize the potential for an awesome version of pumpkin pies and breads. The Jarrahdale are popular for their ability to be candied, baked, and purée like any of the edible pumpkins.

 

Here is a quick 3-4 min video on what these beautiful pumpkins look like on the inside.  Check it out.  http://youtu.be/qWjLOMc72yY

 

 

Of course, they also make a rather dashing autumn inspired work of fine art!  A print of this seasonal fruit would look great in a kitchen or breakfast room being decorated for the fall.

 

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Why Are Pagodas in Zen Gardens?

Why do they put pagodas in Zen gardens?  What is a Pagoda anyway?

To the western mind a pagoda is similar to a cathedral. During the Middle Ages in Europe the Christian Church had a problem.   The Crusades into the holy land produced a rather lucrative market for holy artifacts and relics of the various saints.  Worshipers felt that these relics provided healing, prosperity and happiness if people prayed in their presence.  So, Church leaders started building cathedrals, shrines, and monasteries as a constant reminder of God, his saints, and the power of the church.

A pagoda is an Asian counterpart. Buddhist missionaries and laymen built pagodas to help spread the teachings of Buddha. Various sized pagodas are found from Bangladesh to South East Asia and China through the Korean Peninsula to Japan.  These structures housed important ashes or sacred relic of the Buddhist traditions.

Thus, the ability to shrink one down and place it in a garden as a statue is as natural as finding a cross, or statue of a saint in a Christian meditation garden.  It is a reminder to focus on the teaching, stories, or ideas the garden represents.

Pagoda designs descend from and contain local cultural alterations in appearance from the early Buddhist stupas found in India.   Pagodas are a place of gathering and a physical reminder of the teachings of the Buddha.  It is worth noting that Taoists also use pagodas for their shrines and artifacts too.

Most pagodas are found inside temple complexes of varying sizes and contain various shrines.  The taller pagodas are generally fitted with a metal roof  “hat” that made them susceptible to lightning strikes.  This was often on purpose to give that extra dramatic “pow” of the divine when lightning struck the tower.

These structures last.  Their designs are well suited for extreme natural conditions such as typhoons, lightning, and even earthquake prone regions.  Only a major fire has any real chance of destroying these structures.

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For further information about Pagodas try

 

http://www.kyopro.kufs.ac.jp/dp/dp01.nsf/ecfa8fdd6a53a7fc4925700e00303ed8/42629bd933a02da6492576b800333676!OpenDocument

 

And

 

http://www.jref.com/forum/all-things-japanese-26/pagodas-25061/

 

I used both sites and a little history knowledge as references to this article.