Space

It’s not nothing; nowhere is it empty   Photographing on the American Great Plains was heavenly—not only for what was on the ground but especially for what was overhead. In 2012 I ambled the backroads of South Dakota and Nebraska for ten days, intent on capturing space, in addition to landscapes. My interest in “space” […]

Wisdom Of The Spheres

There is no chance and anarchy in the universe. All is system and gradation. Every god is there sitting in his sphere. Ralph Waldo Emerson     From atoms to galaxies the sphere is a prominent form because it requires the least amount of energy to form and has the least possible area for the […]

Perspective and Perception

From where we are looking, what is our view of the world?   Being six-foot-five, I’ve always viewed the world from a slightly higher perspective than most people. For instance, I see the tops of furniture and people’s heads, and I can see farther in a crowd. No big deal. But that each of us […]

Love

Metaphysical gravity Something we are?   Jesuit paleontologist and philosopher, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin S.J., wrote that love is “The affinity of being for being.” Affinity recognizes love as an energy that’s not only a human experience, it’s also intrinsic to the universe. In support of this, engineer and futurist, R. Buckminster Fuller, often said […]

Light And Shadow

An aesthetic and so much more There’s an intrinsic satisfaction, an aesthetic pleasure, that comes from the experience of light when it plays a prominent, sometimes dominant, role in a photograph or painting. The works of masters such as Rembrandt, Turner, and Hooper are largely characterized and revered for the qualities of light they depict. Light […]

Emergents and the Universe Story

In considering this image for contemplation, the theme that first came to mind was “immensity.” However, in keeping with my propensity to trace subject matter back to its origins, I observed that every human being and before that, critters with eyes who ever lived, has seen skies like this. Curious to know when an atmosphere […]

Symmetry

A sign of balance and agreement According to Nobel laureate Phil Anderson, “It is only slightly overstating the case to say that physics is the study of symmetry.” The word “symmetry” comes from the Greek, synnetria, meaning “Agreement in dimensions, due proportion, arrangement.” I’ve chosen this theme for contemplation because, somewhere along the line, I’d […]

Branching

How life moves in sustainable ways From universe to “nanoverse,” one of nature’s most common structural features is “branching.” Networks of all kinds, physical and intellectual, are grounded in a pattern that chemists refer to as “child” (smaller channels) and “parent” (larger) branches. At the human level we see it in living systems—the brain, arteries […]

Order And Coherence

Forces that characterize the universe from the beginning Initially, this image evoked in me an appreciation of the organizing principles that underlie manifested reality, from sub-atomic particles to the universe. The consistent spherical shapes, irrespective of size, and the way the light raked across them suggesting mass and texture, and that led to considerations of […]

The Evolutionary Spiral

From darkness we advance toward the light The metal stairway in this image evokes in me considerations of the evolutionary spiral, the universe’s operating system, which we know to “favor” increased novelty, diversity, adaptation, complexity and higher levels of organization. Along the bottom steps of the oil tank, I see the significant ordering that has […]