Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Thoughts on Creativity & Random Hike Pics

(A couple of excerpts from Quaker Faith & Practice which I've found pertinent to the theme of some of my recent contemplations):

21.37: 'What's that on the shelf?' my artistic friend asked. 'A turbine blade. I designed it', I replied proudly. 'Oh', she said. Visiting three weeks later she asked, 'Why is that still there?' 'Because I think it's beautiful.' 'Oh', she said. My friend enthused over the beauty of a cathedral, a Rembrandt, a Turner, a sonnet. I find none in a cathedral, little in Rembrandt or poetry, a lot in a Turner. I find great beauty in Concorde, a Norton, a modern suspension bridge, in calculus and a good computer program - especially if I have written it! She little or none. I thrill to the sound of a racing car, the sight and smell of a machine shop, the noise and balletic movement of men and machine shaping white hot steel in a forge - and in my turbine blade. She does not. We could both be moved to tears by mountains, Beethoven, Britten, clouds ... and by friendship.

Graham Clarke, 1994

21.27: A sudden concentration of attention on a rainy August morning. Clusters of bright red berries, some wrinkled, some blemished, others perfect, hanging among green leaves. The experience could not have lasted more than a few seconds, but that was a moment out of time. I was caught up in what I saw: I became a part of it: the berries, the leaves, the raindrops and I, we were all of a piece. A moment of beauty and harmony and meaning. A moment of understanding.

Ralph Hetherington, 1975

I've been thinking a lot about creativity and what classifies as art lately... feeling slightly off because I haven't really done anything intensely creative for a few years. I used to constantly crank out cool woodworking projects, sewing projects, well-manicured flowerbeds, and the list goes on... and my life blew up, leaving me feeling empty and utterly uninspired. I am trying to get back into being creative/productive, but my artistic muse has been moving at a snail's pace. Still, photography fulfills me to some degree, even if it isn't all that professionally rendered. I've also been feeling a deeper level of appreciation for the joy and meaning in other people's art instead of only attaining a measure of fulfillment through creating my own... it seems emotionally and mentally onanistic if one derives pleasure only from their own creations.

And speaking of art, I always find it fascinating when one creates something cute or functional or both... and leaves it out in the middle of nowhere, ostensibly for the enjoyment and curiosity of anybody who walks by. On a hike recently I was surprised to see this ingenious little model mill set up on the edge of a hiking trail way outside of town. The wheel actually turns and whoever set it up has a lovely mind: creating it out of odd scraps of lumber and a wire spool... sluicing the stream so that it actually turns the wheel.

Within a stone's throw of the mill, somebody planted a non-native variety of Columbine ('Purple Magpie' I think, somewhat common in partial shade gardens).

Several pics of an unidentified species of flower that I've only seen twice in my entire life, both times growing in obscure places in the woods. It appears to be a member of the Dicentra (Bleeding Heart) family.
Update: OK, I was close, according to a gentleman from the NH Bureau of Natural Heritage, it is in the same general family of plants which includes dicentras and goes by the name pink corydalis (Corydalis sempervirens).

Moose tracks: judging by the size, probably female and judging by the much smaller, identical tracks accompanying these ones, she probably had a calf with her.

Old stone cabin foundation on the side of the trail

Finally, a picture of the real cat-hole warming hut on Green Mountain

Well-appointed accommodations for the weary hiker/snowmobiler/nomadic hermit

Eh, I think I'm gonna stick to using a tent. I'd be paranoid of catching some sort of parasite from the mattresses, hehe.

A view of my town from on top of Green Mountain, click for a better view

View of Mt. Ascutney (see last post) from the top of Green Mountain

A cathedral of young beech trees over the trail. This would be one of the purest forms of art in my mind.

1 comment:

Peterson Toscano said...

What amazing photos! Really lovely. I like the quotes you chose from F&P especially the one about being artistic.

Lovely stuff.