As children, some of us had the time and freedom to lay down out in our yards and imagine what the drifting clouds above resembled. A lamb, a basketball, a big bow... I hope that no child ever told another that their imagination got it wrong. No two people, even young people will see ambiguous information in exactly the same way.
Here's today's picture
Some of you may think you've seen this before, say about three weeks ago as the featured artwork for Fantasizing Fotos Fridays #3.
However you aren't getting the same artwork twice. For comparison, see the thumbnail of FFF#3's artwork below. There are parallels between the two paintings: dense shadows surrounding a single source of bright light, thick forest, a minimum of textures, and finally two silhouetted human figures centered in the light.
In this small version of Buinowski's painting shown above, Fantasizing Fotos Fridays #6 may appear to have only one human figure. Look carefully to the right of the better-defined figure. Do you see the second figure nearly obscured by bright light rather than shadow?
In the same way, fragments of our environments may be obscured by strong light such as that produced by the sun, theatrical Klieg lights or directed lasers. People may not be able to find something for which they are looking because it is hidden in the shadows, but a sufficiently strong light source can obscure aspects of an object which might make it easier to spot. Strong glare renders an object at least as difficult to see as an object in shadow. Glare may limit how long we can search for an object or study it before looking away.
In strongly-contrasting light vs darkness, details of an object which is casting a shadow may tend to disappear except at the border between light and shadow.* Put another way, the borders of a three-dimensional object become unnaturally sharp at the expense of the object losing its depth and detail.
In Fantasizing Fotos Fridays #3 I wrote, "Silhouettes provide less information so they offer more latitude for our creativity."
I also suggested we imagine both people walking into the forest, walking out of the forest, or even passing one another as one person left and the other person arrived.
This Friday's artwork gives us more information to work with than did the picture we worked with three weeks ago. If you wish, see if you can find something in our new picture--lacking in the previous picture--which helps stimulate your imagination in a new way.
title unknown @ Leszek Buinowski, Polish Surrealism artist
Past time to unleash your imagination!
As always, Remember to think about the picture and imagine what is going on before looking at what I wrote.** No two people will imagine the same thing. That would be weird.
Eighteen weeks ago, I came up with a series of questions based on this painting, every question unanswerable. That was just fine! I didn't want answers to my questions! Actual answers would have revealed that some of the stories I was telling myself were wrong. Remember the children and the clouds?
"He's a surrealist? Really?
"I like the broken stone arch! It changes everything. Is it the only thing like it?
"Who built it? Why build it in the midst of a waterlogged forest?
"Wait. Which came first?
"Is the arch the last remnants of a ruin overtaken by forest, like Cair Paravel***?
"Maybe the arch was always a doorway to something NOT a building! But to what then?
"Which way are the silhouetted men walking? (Are they men?)
"Have they come because they know to where the arch leads?
"It leads somewhere??
"Are they leaving the forest after passing through the arch?
"Maybe the "arch" is a mirror & the men are behind me! Ick. Not sure I like that! That would mean I have to turn around, my back to "the mirror" and watch them approach?
"There's a mirror in MacDonald's "Lilith" which permits access to another world... Yeah. That doesn't help.
"Okay, so no mirror! How do you undo an imaginary thought? By not trying to?"
With what did your imagination gift you? You may want to compare your FFF#6 reactions to your FFF#3 reactions. If you choose to do so, you may temporarily want to ignore any reactions which apply to #6 but not #3, and or to FFF#3 but not to FFF#6. Or else focus on them. As always, the choice is yours.
I have a treat for you! Like you, I originally saw Leszel Buinowski's painting in the same-sized screen capture you did. Before I began writing this blog, I rummaged the internet looking for a larger version of his work. Found one!
This isn't necessarily good. All other things being equal, a larger version of the same picture will add details. (Oh, no! Not details!) Additional details may "contradict" your earlier imaginings! If they do--and if you don't like such rudeness--ignore the details! We're not performing a scientific experiment here or gathering information for a court case.
I suggest ignoring the frame.
What do you think now? Did you come up with additional reactions? (I'm sorry. I haven't had a chance to immerse my imagination in the larger version yet)
* This depends on the angle of the light in relation to the object(s). Bright light striking a rough object at an oblique angle can accentuate surface detail.
*** C S Lewis, "Prince Caspian", The Chronicles of Narnia.