Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Seeing the Light

I started noticing light when I was a child. My eyesight began to deteriorate noticeably sometime in fifth grade, but I didn’t start wearing glasses until 2 years later. During those years - and since then - I have been much more aware of light and color than I was before. I couldn't see the details that other people could see... the millions of blades of grass that make up a lawn or the thousands of leaves on a tree. Instead, I was aware of light and color.

Once I started wearing glasses, my perspective changed again. Suddenly, I could see details that I hadn't been able to see for years. I became aware of texture and detail in my visual world - and I was able to experience them as though they were detached from the light and color that were so familiar to me.
I remember sitting in class years ago - bored by some lesson I should have been paying attention to. I was looking out the window on a beautiful sunny day, and absently pushing my glasses up and down... alternately looking through them and over them. Without the help of the lenses, my world looked like an impressionistic painting. Splashes of color and light without detail - form suggested by shadow and highlight. I have always loved impressionism - perhaps because it seems so familiar to me.

Through the lenses, though - the view returned to normal. I could see textured bark on the tree and the tiny flowers almost hidden in the grass. Those details were as interesting to me as the light and color - but somehow, being able to separate the light from the detail made an impression. When I look at a scene, I can still separate light and color from detail and texture.

I think each is as important as the other in any photograph. Although the viewer may not take the image apart the way I do in my mind, the careful juxtaposition of these elements makes a difference.

Each of my photographs can be broken down into its individual parts. Color, light, texture and detail – or the lack of any of these elements… this is what a photograph is made of.


Blogger Iratxe said...

Hello Varina,
my english is not good enough to express myself as I would like but I will try.
I follow your blog as well as your website with pleasure, you have beatifull photos, they are plenty of light.

Greetings from Spain

November 19, 2007 at 4:05 PM  
Blogger Varina Patel said...

Thanks for your comment, Iratxe. Maybe someday I will be able to visit your beautiful country! I would love to photograph the countryside there. I appreciate the time you took to tell me how you feel about my work. It means everything to me. And I certainly understand the difficulties of learning a foreign language. You should hear my French - or God forbid - my Czech! :)


November 19, 2007 at 4:22 PM  

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