Tuesday, October 21, 2008

fallen, green light, Picasso

Posted by Picasa A few weeks ago I spent a lot of time looking up in order to photograph chimneys, which I felt deserved attention. Recently I have been looking down at the pavement, where leaves and other detritus often, of their own accord, make interesting compositions. Although I crop the photographs, I do not move or adjust the fallen leaves. Sometime a leaf folded over or one beginning to disintegrate adds drama to the scene.

Reflections, even in familiar places, sometimes take you by surprise. In our house, there is an internal window between a half landing on the stairs to the basement, and a raised part of the basement, where there is a built in dresser. Opposite the window and next to the dresser, is another window giving on to what used, in the distant past, to be a coal hole, and is now a sort of winter garden - a small raised area protruding outside the house and enclosed by a glass ceiling. This morning as the sun comes in through the winter garden, I see there a strange green light - the sort of thing you find on an electronic appliance. But there is no such appliance there. It takes me a minute at least to work out that the green light is a reflection of morning sunlight off the rim of a jug on the sill of the stairs window, transferred to the glass of the winter garden window. An oddity relating to the time of day and the angle of the sun, which seems, then, and still does, now, to be a beautiful, fleeting thing, worthy of note.

As I walk past the entrance to Calverley Ground , two boys call after me, " Picasso! Picasso!" I remember that, with the onset of Autumn, I have taken out my beret Basque and today worn it for the first time since last winter. The association with the artist, does nothing to spoil the pleasure I get from the comfort and utility of this head gear, and, in fact adds to its attractions.

5 comments:

marja-leena said...

Light and reflections and their ephemeral hard to capture quality has often frustrated me as a photographer, but you've succeeded with words.

marja-leena said...

Oh, forgot to add that I'm impressed those boys know what Picasso looked like. What an honour to be compared to that master, if only by your beret, and maybe your looks help too!

Bee said...

Although I hesitate to use the word "winter" just yet, one can't escape from the much-lower sun. I'm often blinded by it, as I walk in the afternoons, but it also sets off the (sometimes unexpected) beauties of the season. I was charmed by your "green light" -- you must have felt so fortunate to catch that moment!

Plutarch said...

Marja-leena, reflections are difficult to photograph I find because sometimes they include what you want to omit, eg the camera itself and the operator. Perhaps this is an instance where a picture is less efficient than 10,000 words, (or however many words the saw insists upon.)
Bee, particularly since I have been writing this blog, but even before, I have appreciated the dramatic qualities, which the sun, from its lower position in the sky, brings to the landscape. I agree with you about the way, especially in the afternoon, it often serves as a spotlight picking out buildings or a line of trees, which can be sharply contrasted with the darkening or fading sky behind. I was glad of your visit.

Lucy said...

This once again confirms that Tunbridge must be truly a haven of elevated and rarefied cultural sensibilities, where people chat about Zola on doorsteps and small boys tease gents in the street for their resemblance to cubist painters...

One new year, we were chopping up a fallen tree with our neighbour, who went into his house as evening was dawing in, and came back carrying what we were sure was a glowing lantern. Closer, we realised it was a plastic bottle of petrol for his chain saw, but the low evening sun was glowing through it in such a way that it seemed to shine with its own light.