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Archive for Photography

“Scent”sing

The first roses of the season are in full bloom… in my garden and all over the neighborhood; their scent a intoxicant I willingly abandon myself to. There is a particular blend of longing and joy that scent can evoke… without a word having been spoken, I find myself laid open by this subtle Beauty.

Diane Ackerman, in Natural History of the Senses, says that when Cleopatra first invited Antony to her bed she covered the floor in rose petals a foot and a half deep. Apparently the Romans were so enamored of the rose that they founded Rosalia, an annual holiday to sing her praises (ah! perhaps it’s the Italian in me that so enjoys this luxurious flower).

Still impacted by the sweetness of an online Elemental Ceremony I co-hosted this weekend with my friends Firehawk and Pele, in honor of the element of Air, today I’m struck by the relationship between air and scent. If scent is a kind of nuanced communication delivered by air, it carries a tale we cannot close ourselves off from like we can the stories of our other senses (we can close our eyes or plug our ears indefinitely, but we cannot live without air for more than a few moments). Not that I want to – the scent of new roses in this lovely California Spring is a spirit-reviving tonic and I am most grateful for the Medicine.

 

Kiva Time

I'm sitting here in my office on Solstice Day, feeling the urge to connect, to "check in" and share the energy that's moving in me.

I feel the shift inside me as the whole hemisphere is moving into "kiva time", the time of dreaming and imagining what is to come when the seeds we're planting now awake in the Spring.

It's morning, so even though it's cool here in northern California, the sun is starting to fill the room and animate the crystals I hang in the window to catch the light. My office is newly rearranged, cleaned, and cleared. With art on the walls (beautiful pieces by Christopher Castle and Fletcher Oakes – and I'm awaiting shipment of one from Lisa Lipsett) and all my books out, it feels much closer to the nurturing sanctuary I've wanted to create for myself for some time now. A perfect place to dream those seeds into being.

Seeds
Some exciting projects are germinating: I've started a new venture in partnership with FireHawk Hulin and other friends at Timeless Earth Wisdom. It's called Digital + Earth Wisdom and speaks to my deepest purpose and intent for my work right now. You'll hear much more on this. The multi-generational work I've been doing with Wiser Together is moving gracefully and forcefully into form, and I'm co-designing the curriculum for a Masters Course on World Cafe and Appreciative Inquiry with Fielding Graduate University, where I've been co-presenting courses on World Cafe for the last few years.

I was born in the middle of winter, and this coming birthday is a big one, so I'm planning to take myself on an inner journey with an outer form – a nature-immersed photographic road trip to Sedona (with side trips as and when they appear on the hroizon). Road trips are among my very favorite things (guilty secret) and I am really excited about this one. I've never been to Sedona, so please share anything you think I should know about it, or anything on the way or in the area.

And I'm curious… what's seeding itself in you this winter? What seeds do you want to dream into being in the darkness of your world womb? What would you like to awaken to as the days grow longer and lighter?

Moved by Mountains

Several months ago I received review copies of Tom Reed's two exquisite photography & text books, the hardback Granite Avatars of Patagonia (2009) and recently released paperback Moved by a Mountain: Inspiration from an Alpine View in Alaska (2013).

Pk22-copy
The idea was to review them for Gatherings, the online Ecopsychology journal I co-founded and have edited for most of the last decade.

Due to travel, work deadlines, and the ordinary extraordinary catastrophes and celebrations of everyday life, it's taken me all this time to finish the reviews. But I have to say that the books are both so stunning that I only hope the reviews do enough justice to their profound beauty that there will be a rush on orders when everyone wants their own copy for Christmas (and the author will forgive my tardy delivery). 
 
Pk-copy
Anyway, I thought I'd include some of the images and links to my reviews here in the Beauty Dialogues as well, since Reed's search for the deeper meaning and purpose of beauty resonates so deeply with me and is what this blog is all about.

Speaking of which, here's Tom Reed at TedX in Homer Alaska, speaking on "Natural Beauty and Aesthetic Arrest".

Read my full reviews (including some wonderful quotes) of these fabulous inspiring books here (or just cut to the chase and buy your copies now – I guarantee you won't be disappointed):

Moved by a Mountain: Inspiration from an Alpine View in Alaska
My Review
Buy Now

The Granite Avatars of Patagonia
My Review
Buy Now

Stefanie Atkinson

I recently discovered a new photographer whose work (and attitude) I love, not least because of the way she photographs light. Here's what she says on the front page of her site (obviously she too knows about looking at life through a "beauty lens"):

"I often hear the question: "What lens were you using?" People most often
refer to the camera lens – and while the camera lens is important, the
real lens is what we bring to it, shaped by who we are and where we're
coming from – our perceptions, our unique perspective and the context of
our lives.
"

Here's one of her images (check out others on her website):

Stephanie-atkinson