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  • Melissa Knowles

Visual Meditation in B&W

Updated: Jun 2

As I go through my photos later, I notice recurring patterns that spark my curiosity. These photos were created on the same day at Polly Hill Arboretum and at school. They look different in color, but once I transform them to black and white, I start to see similar repeating patterns—they almost seem like opposites of each other. The concrete wall sits on top of a black strip of paint, and the bush reaches skywards towards a black horizon of shadows.

There's something more to the photo than what we see. When I look through the viewfinder, I feel an inner stillness, even if I need to move around, and a quiet focus no matter the distractions around me. My view of the world is framed in black, and suddenly, it rises up full of invitation. I sometimes begin to sense the invisible world around me and deeply wish to unravel its mysteries. I love to photograph ordinary things, a concrete wall for example. Suddenly, with a little attention a concrete wall reveals its hidden depths and beauty. I like to bring this philosophy into my teaching; after all, I think we all want someone in our lives who won't tell us how or who to be, but let us be, and spend the time really learning to see who we really are, with the ups and the downs, and beyond what we present, or might not have yet discovered about ourselves.

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