Tag Archives: day

underTree and overWrought

underTree and overWrought © 2007 Jered Dawnne

underTree and overWrought © 2007 Jered Dawnne

This walk I took that day: a winding, twisted path through half-faded memories and fractured emotions, engraved new scars on a forty-year-old man still struggling with the all that never was, and frustrated by the need to deal with it. I came here for a moment of solace, but that moment was a fragile thing, compared against the history of this place and its echoes across time.

This is the courtyard around the fountain at the Alamo mission: a place where many people died, long ago. There were many days in my youth, when I was supposed to be “helping” at my adoptive father’s office at City Hall, when I’d steal some time away and come sit under this tree, just sitting, listening, and sometimes comparing the silence to how it might have sounded when the fighting was all done. Yes, I was a morbid kid, internally, anyway. My parents would have been amazed had they known what I was doing: the just sitting, just listening, just…being. Odd things for a clinically hyperactive child.

When I was eleven or twelve, I ran away from home. This was the first place where I stopped. The courtyard was very different, late at night, and not at all welcoming. It was a foreshadowing I failed to recognize until I visited it again, on this day, but it was also a temporary thing. I had always brought my fears to this tree, but that night, I made new ones beneath it. It was the night I realized that eventually, I would very much be on my own in truth, and that I was woefully unprepared to be the man that I would become.

I took this photo after a drive through my old neighborhood, and past my childhood home a couple of times. I couldn’t stop there, of course; home hadn’t been home since 1985: nearly twenty-two years, on this particular day. So, I came here to find a moment’s peace. Of all the images that haunt me in my dreams, and which ultimately faded after my visit that day, this tree still rides along with me, and this place still frames some reveries.

Of course, it looked very different, that late-winter noon in 2007. I probably hadn’t been there since 1983 or 4, truth told. My ties with my adoptive family were incredibly strained by my first year of high school, and they eventually disowned me in 1993. But still, that old oak greeted me with open arms, rooted in the memories of the dead and forgotten, very much like I am rooted still in the abandoned memories of a former self.

And I didn’t become the man I thought I would be, on that night, long before. It felt like I needed to let my old friend know this. Thus I indulged myself, but it was what I needed at the time.

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The Archon of Gradual Decline

The Archon of Gradual Decline © 2015 Jered Dawnne

The Archon of Gradual Decline © 2015 Jered Dawnne

When walking alone, memory-filled yet tomorrow-facing, that particular sidelong introspection becomes a certain form of solace. One must wander, not without direction or purpose, but likewise winding and curving without seeming reason, until the wanderlust becomes its own symphony, its own enactment, its own dialogue. There is a purity to that process which verges on sacredness: every step leads towards sanctuary and peril, and everything in between.

Time erodes us in exponential maunderings which evince more slowly than we truly understand. Even the stones fade away. Even the skies are never truly as they were in the where and when. Even the universe cannot return to what it was.

And we: We are more transient than this by far, bound to an objectivity we barely discern and rarely recognize.

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of that which will become

which was (original) © 2007 Jered Dawnne

which was (original) © 2007 Jered Dawnne

i vow to roam this spring and summer. i abhor this stasis, this unmoving pensiveness. i will rediscover the little things, and redevelop my joy in the beyond. i will recall where i have been and what i have done, but i will reach beyond the little deaths that are the mundane, the well-known, and the half remembered. and i will meet the skies in celebration.

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a shift of focus

treeline offset (version 3) © 2007, 2014 Jered Dawnne

treeline offset (version 3) © 2007, 2014 Jered Dawnne

this is one of the pieces which some of you may remember from towards the end of my private blog. tonight, i attempted to replicate a series of treatments that i was goofing around with on a low-resolution version of this photo on an old iPad. this more intensive, high-resolution version using Nik filters comes very close to what i had done at the time, and of course a bit better. it involves two separate utilizations of bokeh, along with what has become my typical colourimetric manipulations prior to going monochrome. sometimes, the post-production is rather complex, in order to achieve a simplistic-looking result. i’m sure some of my fellow photographers would cringe at the amount of digital darkroom time i spend on some of these, but to me, this is where the real pleasure is at.

if you could track your eye movement when viewing this image, you would discover that your eyes get pulled in a very distinct pattern across the image, and that almost everyone’s eyes would follow the same general pattern. i use this dual-focus “trick” quite a lot, usually a bit more subtly than here. the lines of the tree trunks just make it a bit more imperative than normal.

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and there are days

saddle-back sky, deeper © 2014 Jered Dawnne

saddle-back sky, deeper © 2014 Jered Dawnne

you close your eyes sometimes, and what is there is what once was; and because it once was, it cannot be unseen, yet is never seen as it once was. it’s a function of memory, a function of time, a function of desire, a function of nostalgia, all of which roll into a certain transient stasis that is both realised and unrealised at the remembering. there are days when such things cannot be ignored, and there are days in which they consume us.


Text and image © 2014 Jered Dawnne

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