Sunday, July 16, 2006

Beyond The Immediate

"The three great elemental sounds in nature are the sound of rain, the sound of wind in a primeval wood, and the sound of outer ocean on a beach."

-Harry Beston

T.S. Eliot said, "April is the cruelest month, breeding lilacs out of the dead land, mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots with spring rain." I don't know, to me August is the cruelest of all months, and now it is sitting right in front of me, looming, and taunting. I hate August. It's only redeeming value is that every once in a while, during August, it will give you a little peek at the golden sun of autumn, as if giving one a little provocation to hold onto the future.

I drove down the 17 Mile Drive last Thursday, in an effort to escape the four walls of my cottage, and my mind. I knew the drive would be a physical strain, because my joints have been swollen and achy, but onward I went...and I am not sorry I did. It was a fabulous diversion from stuff that has been clogging up my brain. I was inspired by wild sea birds and animals, the Del Monte Forest, and the natural landscape ans seascape that changes by the moment. I have been on this drive many times, I have seen the usual sights along the way, but it is all so stunning and when you see it at different times of the year, and different times of day, it's like seeing it for the first time...every time.

I understand what Claude Monet meant when he said, "For me, a landscape does not exist in it's own right, since it's appearance changes at every moment; but the surrounding atmosphere brings it to life...the light and the air which vary continually. For me, it is only the surrounding atmosphere which gives subjects their true value." The air was cool, and a little misty. The sky was the bluest-blue I could have imagined,yet there was a blue/pink fog bank moving toward shore, the water was aqua and light blue in color, with waves of both shades coming together as one. It seemed like I was very close to what I imagine heaven looking like, when I dream of being my life on earth. It's fun for me to photograph certain places over and over, at different times of the year, and with different lighting opportunities. It's all such a gift.

Light, is a gift.

One thing that will make August a little easier to face is that I will be attending the, "Monet In Normandy," exhibit at the, Legion of Honor, in San Francisco. The exhibit is showing over 50 of his paintings from his time in Normandy, when he was inspired by the villages, the seasons, and the landscapes of the region. I am so excited to be able to see, for the first time, the actual brush strokes of the father of Impressionism. His paintings, and the Impressionism movement, has always inspired me as an amateur photographer. To look beyond the obvious, the immediate view in the lens, is to bring out the true life of a living scene. It is being able to show my impression of what I see, as opposed to the cold, uninspired reality of what life can be all too often...a never ending August of restlessness, that mixes memory with desire and a longing for a seemingly unreachable autumn of relief. I will always have that moment from the other day, when I was reminded by the light, that I will always have autumn, if I can just look beyond the immediate. :)

"Beyond The Immediate"
17 Mile Drive
Pacific Grove, California
July 13, 2006


V said...

The Monet quote is perfect.

Suzanne R said...

Love this, Carly. I, too, find August to be a bit of a trial, with the relentless heat, but I am always glad when September comes and it cools and the beauty of autumn takes over. I can't put it like you did -- thanks for your eloquence.

Karen Funk Blocher said...

Wpw, I love that picture. And yes, I get that too, the way the same place is different every time. For example: never the same sunset twice!

I am so glad you're going to get to see a Monet exhibit. There aren't really any visual artists with that kind of impact on me, but I kind of wish that weren't so!

sunflowerkat119 said...

"Light is a gift"

Spoken like a true photographer!