Why red and green at Christmas? The Catholic faith uses red as the color to represent Jesus because of his death on the cross and his blood that was shed for the sins of humanity. Green is the color of nature, representing life, and therefore the hope of eternal life.
“When I work, and in my art, I hold hands with God” – Robert Mapplethorpe
“Exhilarated beauty” is the image I chose today because I have just come off of an exhilarating experience with my first solo exhibit. There is actually one day left, the gallery is open from 10 to 6 tomorrow, but the artist reception was Friday and I volunteered at the gallery several hours over the weekend. I am excited to be able to report that I have sold several pieces and have met some incredible people, talented artists, and received wonderful compliments and words of encouragement. It has been a great pleasure to share my gift with others! I chose the quote in continuance of the calla lily/Robert Mapplethorpe series and because I truly believe my photography is a gift from God…his miraculous works are all around us and he is using my camera, lenses, and me to capture them and share them with the world in a unique way.
I must add that this series, as with almost all of my floral images, has been done using only natural light and my camera settings, with the only edits being black and white conversion.
“Love and faithfulness meet together; righteousness and peace kiss each other.” Psalm 85:10
The image of the scroll was taken during a recent shoot for a Bat Mitzvah. I paired a verse that I love from the Old Testament book of Psalms with the image of the scroll. As the words photographed are in Hebrew I have no idea what they actually say, but felt an Old Testament verse would be appropriate to accompany the image. I love the verse because it is beautiful and contains four words critical to overall happiness; words that I truly wish the world could live by.
The poem above was inspired by a recent trip to Eastern State Penitentiary in which I did the audio tour and heard testimonies from former prisoners as well as former guards. If my memory serves me correctly, the first prisoner to experience solitary confinement was a man who stole a horse. His head was covered so that he could not define his where-a-bouts and so that no one could identify him. The images accompanying the poem are a few that I felt coordinated well with the story told through the poem. The quote below by Charles Dickens really summarizes what life in solitary confinement was like. The quote, too, fell in line with the words of my poem.
“Looking down these dreary passages, the dull repose and quiet that prevails, is awful. Occasionally, there is a drowsy sound from some lone weaver’s shuttle, or shoemaker’s last, but it is stifled by the thick walls and heavy dungeon-door, and only serves to make the general stillness more profound. Over the head and face of every prisoner who comes into this melancholy house, a black hood is drawn; and in this dark shroud, an emblem of the curtain dropped between him and the living world, he is led to the cell from which he never again comes forth, until his whole term of imprisonment has expired….He is a man buried alive; to be dug out in the slow round of years….
And though he lives to be in the same cell ten weary years, he has no means of knowing, down to the very last hour, in what part of the building it is situated; what kind of men there are about him; whether in the long winter night there are living people near, or he is in some lonely corner of the great jail, with walls, and passages, and iron doors between him and the nearest sharer in its solitary horrors.” – Charles Dickens in 1842 after he visited the Eastern State Penitentiary
“Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates his brother is still in the darkness. Whoever loves his brother lives in the light and there is nothing in him to make him stumble.” 1 John 2:9-10
“…God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” – 1 Peter 5:5-7