In Praise of Black and White: Part V

January 28, 2015 § 4 Comments

Almost like clockwork, every January I’m reminded of my love for black and white. Maybe it’s the monotones of winter. Maybe it’s the bright white snow against a black sky. Maybe it’s because each year a new Ansel Adams calendar hangs on my studio door.

Whatever it may be, I’ve long been drawn to the beauty of black & white art, going back to the first time I picked up that favorite tool of mine (the #2 pencil) and sensed that magic was held within its lead.

From pencil or pen to the magnificent drama of a fine black & white photograph, I’m captivated by the power and emotional breadth that can be achieved without a spot of color. No distractions. Just character and grace, depth and strength and guts and mood. And like a good story, well done black & white allows your mind to add its own color by filling in what’s left unsaid.

Enjoy!

1d2f5f2d2fa35f176b5f04697a47bca2

Jornal da Fotografia

cowgirl.boot2

Clare Colins

paris.fog2

Michael Rajkovic

amish.field2

Jenő Dulovits, 1935

snowy.field2

Gorazd Kranjc

ocean.wave2

from UltraLinx

eagle.photo2

Yves Schüpbach

baby.wolf2

Jeff M for Short / Lifecreations

cobweb2

Patrick Hübschmann

batman.robin2

Batman and Robin

apple.waterdrops2

by the-definition.deviantart.com

old.woman2

found on The Happy Mango @ pinterest

violin2

Nelson Rietzke

old.camera2

source unknown

254f3753a74f73789254a5f768fec4e5

Joko on 500px

244fb0961cf7fd30105e0d9b06f44700

source unknown

gatsby

source unknown

Andre Kohn

Andre Kohn

Patricia Saxton

 

Stéphane Berla

Stéphane Berla

Patricia Saxton / Book of Dragons

Patricia Saxton / Book of Dragons

source unknown – possibly claudihexlein?

wedding.cake2

Modwedding

Portrait and wedding photographer East Yorkshire

Ally Byrom

white.cat2

Vishuddha

sea.rocks2

Michel Rajkovic

mlk.blackwhitehands

source unknown

 

Please note, I’ve tried to find image sources for all of these images, and sometimes failed. I would love to give proper credit where due, so if you know the original source of any of these labeled “source unknown”, please let me know!

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In Praise of Black and White: Part IV

January 30, 2013 § 2 Comments

It’s a black and white world tonight ~ snow is falling against the dark night sky, which seems to take an edge off the bitter of winter’s cold  ~ and I’m reminded how every year at this same time I feel this same compulsion to post some great black & white pieces. (It’s starting to feel a little spooky, how this happens, on cue, every January.) Whatever the reason for the timing, I adore black and white; always have. From my life-long love affair with the #2 pencil, to the magnificent drama of a fine black & white photograph, I’ve been captivated by the beauty and emotional breadth that can be so singularly captured without a spot of color. There’s character and grace and strength and guts and mood that seeps into your skin. I’ve written at length about these moods in the past, so will spare you the repetition and get on with the show!

"Oak Tree, Sunset City" / Ansel Adams

“Oak Tree, Sunset City” / Ansel Adams

Photo by Hegel Jorge

Photo by Hegel Jorge

Tattoo

Tattoo

Marilyn

Marilyn

tea.wisdom.bw

Tea Wisdom / Patricia Saxton

Artist: Jose Ernesto Rodriguez

Artist: Jose Ernesto Rodriguez

Boneshaker Zinfandel / Hahn Family Wines

Boneshaker Zinfandel / Hahn Family Wines

Gia Photography

Gia Photography

Lovely

Stair Design at Musee Robert Tatin

Land and Sea Clothing Co.

Land and Sea Clothing Co.

Eagle / @Patricia Saxton

Eagle / @Patricia Saxton

do.more

Black & White Mimi Shoe

Black & White Mimi Shoe

Zentangle

Zentangle

350x500_AnEthicsOfInterrogation

Book Cover

2011-06-03-jacknewdaniels_011-thumb

J.D. Label

Photo by David Mar Quinto

Photo by David Mar Quinto

Photo by Hengki Koentjoro

Photo by Hengki Koentjoro

"Ray" Movie Poster

“Ray” Movie Poster

Vulture / David Lloyd

Vulture / David Lloyd


In Praise of Black and White: Part III

January 15, 2012 § 2 Comments

Almost like clockwork, my mind turns to black & white imagery… as it did last January, and the January before that. I hadn’t realized that! In truth of course, it’s not just a once a year thing ~ I’ve always been drawn to the power and beauty of black & white art, probably from the first time I picked up that favorite tool of mine (the #2 pencil), and sensed that magic was held within its lead.

So, once again I’ll post the original text (which remains meaningful to me), and share some choice imagery. (If you want to skip to the pictures, I won’t be offended!)

……………

Each year, a new Ansel Adams wall calendar hangs on the door leading to my studio. His superbly articulated, stunning black and white photography reminds me daily of my love for the natural world and the innumerable shades, shapes, shadows and tones that create, change, and emerge from, our world.

Yet the classic beauty and the powerful visual possibilities of black and white are often neglected. Straight black and white design is often passed by in favor of any use of color. As if black and white implied something dull or less important. Which is far from the truth!

When used well, black and white is intensely dramatic, vigorous, elegant and rich. It can make a powerful point without the distraction of colors. It plays on bright or moody, or edgy or slick in ways that color cannot. It can sparkle with cleanliness, and shimmer with subtlety. When used well, it expresses itself with undisguised strength, character and integrity.

Of course, not all photographers have the eye nor skill of an Ansel Adams. Not all designers *see* in black and white. Clients rarely consider it. But it would be nice to see a greater appreciation of the noble duo of black and white.

When people want straight talk, when they want the truth, they’ll say “tell me in black and white”. But people often speak in shades of gray, or dress their language in garish colors for dramatic effect. And so it can be with design – a multitude of colors may become too competitive, potentially drowning in an undifferentiated sea of tones or gussied up so much the point is lost for the color, like shouting for attention in a crowd.

Color, in and of itself, is naturally beautiful. Bold, rich fusions of color. Earthy color, otherworldy color. Pale, cool, warm or dense. It’s vibrant and alive and emotional. But color alone will not make a bad design good. And it’s not so much that color is overrated, but that black and white is underrated. The effects of black and white can be pretty spectacular.

Stripped of color, a million shades become a lansdcape of lights and darks that blend and weave and bounce against one another to create a very rich whole. A striking black and white image often touches us unexpectedly …  refreshing, engaging, and wonderfully inspiring. It’s raw and fundamental – and like a good story, it’s satisfying. Like a good story, it allows your mind to add its own color by filling in the parts left unsaid.

Enough said. Enjoy.

In Praise of Black and White: Part II

January 28, 2011 § 3 Comments

Ansel Adams / Aspens / Northern New Mexico 1958

I wrote this post a year ago. The text (with some edits) remains meaningful to me, but the images are new. (If you want to skip to the pictures, the short version is that I love black and white art and feel it’s under-appreciated…!)

Each year, a new Ansel Adams wall calendar hangs on the door leading to my studio. His superbly articulated, stunning black and white photography reminds me daily of my love for the natural world and the innumerable shades, shapes, shadows and tones that create, change, and emerge from, our world.

Yet the classic beauty and the powerful visual possibilities of black and white are often neglected. Straight black and white design is often passed by in favor of any use of color. As if black and white implied something dull or less important.

But when used well, black and white is intensely dramatic, vigorous, elegant and rich. It can get a powerful point across without the distraction of colors. It can be bright or moody, edgy or slick in ways that color cannot. It can sparkle with cleanliness. Black and white carries undisguised strength, character and integrity … when used well.

Of course, not all photographers have the eye nor skill of an Ansel Adams. Not all designers *see* in black and white. Clients rarely consider it. But it would be nice to see a greater appreciation of the noble duo of black and white.

When people want straight talk, when they want the truth, they’ll say “tell me in black and white”. But people often speak in shades of gray, or dress their language in garish colors for dramatic effect. And so it can be with design – a multitude of colors becomes too competitive, potentially drowning in an undifferentiated sea of tones or gussied up so much the point is lost for the color, like shouting for attention in a crowd.

Color, in and of itself, is naturally beautiful. Bold, rich fusions of color. Subtle, earthy color. Pale, cool, warm or dense. It’s vibrant and alive and emotional. But color alone will not make a bad design good. And it’s not so much that color is overrated, but that black and white is underrated. You don’t see it a lot, which is too bad, because the effects of black and white can be pretty spectacular.

Stripped of color, a million shades become a lansdcape of lights and darks that blend and weave and bounce against one another to create a very rich whole. A striking black and white image often touches us unexpectedly …  refreshing, engaging, and wonderfully inspiring. It’s raw and fundamental – and like a good story, it’s satisfying. Like a good story, it allows your mind to add its own color by filling in the parts left unsaid.

Enough said. Enjoy.

Ansel Adams / Tetons Snake River

 

“In Praise of Black & White: Part 1” images can be seen here.

In Praise of Black and White: Part I

January 23, 2009 § 3 Comments

Ansel Adams, Moon and Half Dome

Ansel Adams, Moon and Half Dome

Each year, a new Ansel Adams wall calendar hangs on the door leading to my studio.  His superbly articulated, stunning black and white photography reminds me daily of my love for the natural world as well as the innumerable shades, shapes, shadows and tones that create, change, and emerge from, the world around us.

Yet in a time when everyone wants color, the classic beauty and the powerful visual possibilities of black and white are often neglected.  In the design world, black and white is often completely overlooked or passed by in favor of any use of color.  As if black and white implies something less important, or something dull – even something “cheap”.

But when used well, black and white can be anything but dull, nor without value.  Black and white can be intensely dramatic, elegant and rich.  It can get a strong point across without the distraction of colors.  It can be brilliant or moody, edgy or slick in ways that color cannot.  It can sparkle with cleanliness. Black and white carries undisguised strength, character and integrity … when used well.  Not all photographers have the eye nor skill of an Ansel Adams. Not all designers see in black and white.  Clients rarely consider it.  But it would be nice to see a greater appreciation of the noble duo of black and white.

When people want straight talk, they’ll say “tell me in black and white” – which infers that they’ll get to the truth of the matter.  But more often people speak in shades of gray, or dress it up in garish colors for dramatic effect. So it is with design – a multitude of colors have the potential to become an undifferentiated sea of grays, or gussied up so much the point is lost for the color.

Of course color is beautiful.  As an artist, I can’t help but adore color. Bold, rich fusions of color. Yet color alone will not make a bad design good. And it’s not so much that color is overrated, but that black and white is underrated. You don’t see it alot, which is unfortunate, because the effects of black and white can be pretty spectacular.

It’s a rich experience to see things in black and white; stripped of color, a million shades of gray become a lansdcape of lights and darks that blend and bounce against one another to create a whole. Even if you don’t see things quite like that, a striking black and white image often touches people unexpectedly.  It’s raw and fundamental – and like a good story, it’s satisfying, and it allows your mind to fill in the color that’s left unsaid. Like a well-told story, black and white art can be refreshing, engaging and wonderfully, surprisingly inspiring.

Below is a broad sampling of some pretty nice black & white work. There’s a whole lot more  (though not enough)  than shown here, but it’s a good smattering of styles …

bws3

bw1bws2bws4bws5bws6bws71bws8

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September 11: Hope and Remembrance

September 11, 2016 § 2 Comments

At 9:00 a.m. on 9/11/01, I’d just come back from dropping my daughter at kindergarten. The sky was robin-egg blue, the air a perfect September calm. A neighbor screamed to me from her car, and the rest of the day was sheer horror.

Forty minutes away. Too close. Much too close.

That night we all gathered on my front lawn, a circle of candles and hearts and prayers.

You just don’t forget.

If anything good came from that awful day, it was that for at least a brief time we were one United States of America. All Americans. We all felt a pain in the pits of our stomachs, the lurching of our hearts, the constriction in our throats and tears in our eyes. We loved our neighbor, near and far, from cities to remote little towns, black, brown, white, yellow, red, gay, straight, male, female. We were family, wounded, and we grieved as one under our red, white and blue. We were proud, we were strong, we were honoring the brave and the lost and the taken. They were us, we were them. All across the country we were united by a devastation that reminded us that love, life, freedom – and each other – are valued beyond measure.

Our hearts softened towards each other – but I also think how sad that we couldn’t sustain that sense of camaraderie and pride when things calmed down. Routines reestablished. By necessity and will, we carried on. Yet within that carrying on, even while terror continues to loom like a disturbing alternative universe normal, we seemed to shift away from commonality and towards pockets of we are not them, they are not us. As if we can’t sustain loving our neighbor without sweeping tragedy to bring it about. (Weddings and funerals come to mind. Drama brings people together. Human nature?)

We argue on our right and left. We suffer politicians. I hear a lot of talk that doesn’t walk. I hear each news cycle replacing the last – yesterday’s shocking unanswered wrong overrun by today’s, and today’s by tomorrow’s. We numb. We medicate on electronics. Opinions aren’t debated, they’re spewed. We don’t listen. We don’t really see. The world is in shambles.  We seem very divided. Something is wrong here.

But for one day, maybe just an hour, maybe only 10 minutes ~ we’ll remember 9/11 and that flood of love and hope and “don’t you dare” will fill us up. We’ll be a united family for 10 minutes. We’ll remember why we love this place and the people in it. And maybe, just maybe, we can nurture that love and hope and integrity a little longer? Might the foundational idea that we are a free people nourish and inspire us just a little longer? That it’s worth fighting for?

Can we recognize that there is goodness here and that yes, there’s also some very ugly, very dark scary shit in the world and it’s up to each one of us to know the difference and take up the torch right where we are with a battle cry to spread a little more light, a little more love, a little more courage?

There are some amazing people in this world, and I’m lucky to know several who take up that torch every day with all their hearts. We all know them. They are sincere. Let’s all be more sincere. Let’s honor the brave, the lost and taken with some blessings. Be the blessing in someone’s day. Be present. Be good.

And I had no idea this piece of writing was going to go the way it did, but I hope we can use this memory to remember that at the end of every day we’re all in this together. At the base of the fallen towers let’s continue to plant hope, and water it well.

September 11: Hope and Remembrance

September 11, 2014 § 4 Comments

saxton_nine.11..color

At 9:00 a.m. on 9/11/01, I’d just come back from dropping my daughter at kindergarten. The sky was robin-egg blue, the air a perfect September calm. A neighbor screamed to me from her car, and the rest of the day was sheer horror. I will never forget. Shock. Agony. Grief.

Forty minutes away. Too close. Much too close.

That night we all gathered on my front lawn, a circle of candles and hearts and prayers.

You just don’t forget.

If anything good came from that awful day, it was that for at least a brief time we were one United States of America. We were all Americans. We all felt a pain in the pits of our stomachs, the lurching of our hearts, the constriction in our throats and tears in our eyes. We loved our neighbor, near and far, from cities to remote little towns, black, brown, white, yellow, red, gay, straight, male, female. We were family, a wounded family, and we grieved as one. Red, white and blue became the new black. We were proud, we were strong, we were one, honoring the brave and the lost and the taken. They were us, we were them.

Our hearts may have softened towards each other, but I also think how sad that we couldn’t sustain that sense of pride and family. Things calmed down, we went about our routines. Fell back into old patterns. Terror still threatens this world of ours, and yet we fight our own small fights, our petty snits, our egos drowned in the latest trend, the latest news, the latest gossip, the latest celebrity sighting. As if we can’t sustain loving our neighbor without tragedy to bring it about. Oh, but that’s human nature. Weddings and funerals. Drama brings people together.

We argue on the right, on the left, and we suffer the idiocy of politicians. I hear a lot of talk that doesn’t walk. I hear each news cycle replacing the last. Like some strange reality show, yesterday’s unanswered wrong overrun by today’s, and today’s by tomorrow’s. We numb. We stay medicated on electronics. Opinions aren’t debated, they’re spewed. We don’t listen. We don’t really see. The world is in shambles.  We seem very divided. Something is wrong here.

But for one day, maybe just an hour, maybe only 10 minutes ~ we’ll remember 9/11 and that flood of love and hope and “don’t you dare” will fill us up. We’ll be a family for 10 minutes. We’ll remember why we love this place and the people in it. But maybe, just maybe, we can nurture that love and hope and integrity a little longer? Might the foundational idea that we are a free people nourish and inspire us, just a little longer? That it’s worth fighting for?

Can we recognize that there is light and that yes, there is also some very ugly, very dark scary shit in the world and it’s up to each one of us to know the difference and take up the torch right where we are with a battle cry to spread a little more light, a little more love, a little more courage?

There are some amazing people in this world, and I’m lucky to know several who take up that torch every day with all their hearts. We all know them. They are sincere. Let’s all be more sincere. Let’s honor the brave, the lost and taken with some blessings. Be the blessing in someone’s day. Be present. Be good.

And I had no idea this piece of writing was going to go the way it did, but I hope we can use this memory to remember that at the end of the day we’re all in this together. At the base of the fallen towers let’s plant hope, and water it well.

Destination: Perth Amboy (Travels with Jose and Nick)

March 30, 2010 § 4 Comments


Destination: Perth Amboy Art Gallery Center For the Arts for the opening reception of “The Many Faces Of Eve” exhibit, in which some of my work is exhibited along with 7 other women artists. And as is often the case, the journey was more than half the fun.

We’re a party of four: Jose, Nick, my daughter Carolyn and myself. I drive, because Jose grew up in Florida and drives with trepidation at 40 mph on the highway. Nick lives in the New York City and I understand that the last time he drove was on a vacation out west 10 years ago. Nick and Jose think I am an amazing driver, and revel at my “calm”. They sit in the back so they don’t get nervous as I effortlessly dart in and out of lanes with practiced care.

Jose and Nick, both prolific artists, carry on their typically fascinating repartee on history, the arts and socio-cultural snippets in a brilliant, almost stream-of-consciousness style. Cruising down Rt. 287, we cover Hitler, Mussolini and Franco, St. Peter in the Walls, the Vanderbilts, Guggenheims and Coopers, and Nick getting lost in the desert during his Army years.

Because we arrive early, we take a drive down to the Perth Amboy waterfront and find a cozy pub restaurant. We sit at the bar with stuffed and painted swordfish watching over our shoulders, and we order food and drinks. I learn that this is one of Jose’s wife’s favorite places, and that afterwards she likes to go for a walk along the water.

I also learn that this urban scrawl of a town filled with trinkets like Jesus statues with eyes that wiggle, costume lingerie and shops that sell everything for a dollar, was once a thriving city where, in fact, the Guggenheim family originally made its fortune in the tin and copper business. (I’d always assumed they’d been in the art business…) (And to be fair to the city of Perth Amboy, it’s experiencing a revival, much to its credit.)

The bar is small, so we can’t help noticing a middle-aged woman, a retired man wearing a navy baseball cap, and a man in a Mets jacket, in the throes of a vigorous debate about the condition of America –  more specifically, about the current health care measures. Tired from a long day followed by a long drive, I think that my daughter, myself and my 2 artist friends are secretly pleased for the diversion. Possibly a classic one.

The woman is a registered Democrat but considers herself Independent. She holds the floor for a good while, batting back rebuttals from across the bar, where the retired man plays devil’s advocate.

“Have you read the bill?” he’d ask, and she’d say “No, but….  well, have you read the bill?” and he’d say “No, but …”  …So that both have their say but there isn’t a lot of credence being placed on the other’s opinion. “Are you one of those Teabaggers?” he asks. “No, but I think they have every right to speak up.” “Well, from everything I’ve read they seem like troublemakers” On it goes.

At some point – must have been that our food arrived and in our ravenous state we lost track of the conversation ~ really yummy food, by the way ~ the woman has no more to say and the conversation shifts over to the guy in the Mets jacket seated beside the retired man.

The Mets guy is Republican. If the topic were different, I imagine these two being friends. Obviously they both like baseball. But of course the views of these two men are even farther apart than the woman’s had been, making it feel like we’re watching a microcosmic episode of MSNBC vs. FOX News.

Each man clearly feels confident, and just a little bit righteous, about their opinions. In a situation like this I wouldn’t normally chime in and I do NOT want to get in the middle of what is becoming a somewhat heated political discussion. Yet they’re driving me a little crazy, and it’s all I can do to bite my tongue.

There’s a slight but growing air of volatility. The bartender walks around to diffuse a potential fight. He puts his hand on a shoulder and says, “Take it easy, guys.”

At the same time, Jose apparently senses my tongue biting, so he tosses me into the ring (… what was he thinking? … or maybe he saw an opportunity break the tension…) by announcing that I have something I want to say. Which is actually true – so out it spills. Even more surprising, to me, is that they listen … as I tell them that they are, right then and right there, acting out the divide in our country between right/left, right/wrong ~ it’s all black and white with no gray area. They are so sure of their own positions, they don’t hear the other person’s view. There’s not enough open-mindedness going on to at least consider some of the points the other made. They’re not having a conversation ~ not even a debate ~ it’s all “I’m right, you’re wrong, this is the way it is, and, he said this, and well, but he said that…”  Almost a test of wills. There is condescension. Try to listen to each other, not just plan your next stab.

My piece has been said. No fists are raised. (Later, Nick shares how impressed he was that I “got in the middle of the fight”. I did? I didn’t think it was all that bold, but of course, I couldn’t see myself.) Then they ask my daughter her opinion. She answers with fabulous diplomacy for a 13-year-old. I am proud.

Shortly after that, Jose talks to them too. Jose is both an artist and a professor. I don’t think I’ve ever met a more knowledgeable historian; one who’s interestingly knowledgeable, not just book smart. So he comes at them with this wealth of archival information and holds them in the palm of his hand. And, unlike me, (and more bravely than me), he takes sides – yet he does so in such a way that disarms both men.

It is pretty remarkable. They seem to lose their battle cry, and instead wonder aloud about who this guy is – where was it that he taught, what school? Interesting how the mind can respond.

We go on our merry way, four artistic souls out for a simple taste of life. We walk along the piers, take some pictures. Ponder more juicy historical morsels and finally end up at the art show, which is, if you recall, the whole reason for our journey.

The show is lovely, energetic, and warm. I especially like the conga musicians. They come late though, and we have to leave. We head for home… with the streaming dialogue in the back seat serving up more intellectual treats, and stories already being concocted about yet another creative journey with Jose and Nick. And once again, they admire my driving skill.

I’ll always wonder how it ended up over there at the bar by the bay.

I’m also thinking, my daughter probably learned more in those few hours than in a year of social studies class. The really good news is she also thought it was fun. As did I.

A couple days later I overheard my daughter repeat to a friend something she learned that night. Her friend asked her how she knew what she knew. She told them it’s because her Mom hangs out with really smart people. :  )

ps: there are a few more pictures from the exhibit at the patricia saxton blog.

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Unity, Peace & the Autumn Equinox

September 21, 2018 § Leave a comment

“We are each other’s harvest; we are each other’s business; we are each other’s magnitude and bond.” ~ Gwendolyn Brooks

September 21st is the officially designated International Day of Peace. Events coordinated by the United Nations, various peace organizations and interested local groups are intended to create a wave of peace around the globe, or at least to put some hefty, prayerful weight behind that intention.

For one day, concentrated collections of humanity unite with one hope: peace.

But that’s not all. It’s also the Fall Equinox – one of two times a year when day and night are of equal length. Where spring’s equinox ushers in longer days and more light, the autumn equinox provides a period of balance before the darker, more introspective days of winter. It’s a time to appreciate the reaping of harvest; a time of giving thanks.

For whatever reason, no doubt influenced by my father’s rural roots, I’ve always found the cycles of the natural world both intriguing and instructive … and I’m kind of giddy that the International Day of Peace coincides with the day on nature’s calendar that exemplifies balance and fruition. Makes me smile. As if there just might be some divine order amid the madness.

My artwork (shown above) was created in honor of this unified effort – the inspired energies focusing on peace across our beautiful planet, on this most balanced day of the year.

………

I don’t usually explain my art, but I’ll break form for this one. The colors of fall blend to represent all people, all colors, all walks of life. The bird – a symbol of hope, promise and freedom – faces forward with optimism, its swirly feathers joyful. The word “unity” is filled with a world map, signifying (perhaps obviously) global camaraderie. The two lines of vertical text show the word “peace” in a multitude of languages. The stark black and white background represents the balance of light and dark, and the idea that hard-edged barriers can be fluidly crossed and complemented. I tried to show that simplicity that can be distilled from complexity, and that a sense of groundedness can coexist with dreams and maybe even lift us in flight towards the possibility of peace.

………

 Here’s to dreams ~  Patricia

Giraffe Socks

June 13, 2014 § 6 Comments

It’s a gray day. And I’m wearing gray. Top to bottom, inside and out. And I wonder, am I feeling gray? Why all the gray, Patsy?

I don’t know about you, but when life requires a little extra thought, when it calls for a dose of self-reflection, I tend to retreat to sort it through. And only then ~ after I’ve sorted enough to have a sensible conversation about whatever it is, or sorted enough to be receptive to what someone else might have to say – do I share it, if at all. It might have turned into a nugget of wisdom by then, or a revelation, or simply a re-telling of when such-and-such made me examine such-and-such. But I don’t wear stuff on my sleeve. Nothing against those who do – in fact, who knows, you might be better off! It’s just not my way.

So I see myself on this gray day, all in gray, feeling gray. Not gray as in “down in the dumps” gray ~ but gray as in “not black and white”, not crisp and clear. And I see that I’m feeling a bit edgy. Uncertain. And definitely a bit vulnerable. I’ve shared parts of myself recently that I didn’t expect to. Good people, and it’s all okay, but still, I feel more exposed than usual. It’s as if a little sign popped up that reads: “Check it out. Dip in the road. Proceed with caution.”.

So I’ve dressed to hide. To soften the edges. To soothe. To avoid creating static or “noise”. To seek balance. To retreat and sort. Gray is a good color for quiet observation.

Then I look down, and tucked under the cuff of my gray jeans, I see my giraffe socks. (Yes, don’t make fun, they’re quite cute, really.) And am glad I’ve also dressed to remind myself to keep it light, that “life’s too mysterious, don’t take it too serious” (which is really bad grammar, whoever made that up, but the point is well taken. 🙂 ).

And that is that. Have yourself a good day. I’m off to the gray horizon to ponder my vulnerability while chomping on the nearest Acacia tree.

giraffes-hd_sm.gray

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