I do not know which to prefer,
The beauty of inflections
Or the beauty of innuendos,
The blackbird whistling
Or just after.

—Wallace Stevens, Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird

An abstract of shadows.

Shadows are wonderful art. They are both the object and a color. They have more possibility than the object itself, because everyone gets to fill in their own idea of color and size. Yet they are completely dependent on the angle and the amount of light.

A shadow is not the object, but it identifies the object. The shadow is never far from the object, and can be more beautiful and meaningful than the object.

A dandelion puff and its shadow.

Sometimes shadows bring understanding. What we cannot grasp in three dimensions and color becomes clear in black and gray, stretched out before us.

Bonsai and its shadow

Shadows give dimension, add depth and occasionally a completely different perspective of our own opinion.

However you see them, shadows belong in your life, your journal, your photographs and your art journal. They will never bore you.

-Quinn McDonald would like to cast a long shadow across the earth, but still requires growth to accomplish it.

4 thoughts on “Shadows

  1. Shadows are a photographer’s dream, too. The light and dark contrasts are irresistible. A bit harder to deal with the shadow side of one’s life, but a worthwhile endeavor. Wonder what sort of project would combine the two — art of shadows with self reflection on the shadow side?

    • It’s a perfect reflection on the shadow side of our personality. A shadow photo opens the door to wonderful questions–what’s really happening? What am I missing in seeing only black and white? What does the dark add to this image? Where can I add light to make a better contrast?

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