Moon Bridge
Moon Bridge
Perfectly pruned Trees
Floating lotus island
Floating lotus island

I wrote this piece on photography and store telling for my writing group this morning:    With a tap of my finger on my iPhone I can change a brightly colored photo

bright lotus pool
colorful lotus pool

to a black and white, then make it textured or add silky swirls with a few more clicks then back again to bright. I can tell five different stories from one click I made a last week. The dried, failed and dying artichoke can become a Masonic eye holding the great secrets of the universe at one moment then become a glowing gypsy fortune tellers neon sign with just a little fiddling.  Seeking to find a filter that expresses the true essence of this the artichoke I came upon  “pencil paint” that turns the humble thistle into a Durer etching:

Thistle etching
Thistle etching

Which one is true or doe it matter? All is 1’s and 0’s dots of light arranged and rearranged on and on, for ever… The stories we choose to make out the light and dark in our life is more to the point of what life is all about, The essence? The Truth?
We can be the bedraggled, wilted, forgotten, and betrayed orphaned, or the mystic or a fine piece of art work. It all depends upon the filters we choose to see life through. As an example at the moment I am looking for the positive way to look at a rude, over perfumed person I must deal with. The only thing I came up with is the “he’ll be gone soon” filter. Click!
For now Let me tell you the story of the photos at the top of this piece. They are from the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park. This Sunday afternoon in the middle of the summer, when we were there, it was packed with people but somehow it was peaceful. Everyone waited patiently to have a turn to click-capture the Moon Bridge or the lotus pond. It seems everything in the garden, from the bridges and streams, to the rocks and mosses are placed to be in harmony with one another. We hoards of tourist come in to alignment with this geometry. There is space for us all.

My Favorite tourists
My Favorite tourists Jessie and Daniel on the Moon Bridge

Most of us don’t even speak the same language but we manage to communicate well enough to hand each other our phone and cameras to take pictures of one another, on the bridge, in front of the Buddha or next to the koi pond.
While the meta story of the harmony of heaven and earth, water and stone, wood and metal filter out war and death outside this garden. The Gardener who created this peaceful place was not immune to pain of war. He and his family were sent to the Japanese Interment camp at the beginning of WWII. Is there a filter that can transform this story. If you find it let me know.

Lotus at the base of the Buddha
Lotus at the base of the Buddha unfiltered.

This post created in alignment with Lens and Pens Black and White Challenge. Which Photo do you feel the most harmony with?

Happy Monday

View other entries for this week’s challenge:


11 thoughts

    1. I feel guilty for taking compliments for this photo because I just stood in the obvious spot and pointed my phone…The place is so beautiful It’s hard to miss the beauty. Okay thanks 🙂


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