Contrasts in Photos, Writing and Life – Pansy and Magnolia – Picture to Ponder – v6 – issue 23

by Sheila Finkelstein on June 9, 2010

This past week Hank Kellner, Photographer/Writer/Former English Professor and teacher and a relatively new Picture to Ponder subscriber contacted me, acknowledging my photographs and asking if he could use one of my photos in a post on his blog. Needless to say I felt quite flattered, particularly after reading some of his background, especially when I saw all that he has done in English Education, including having a published book – WRITE WHAT YOU SEE: 99 Photos to Inspire Writing.

And, speaking of books and writing, my PICTURES TO PONDER, INSPIRED JOURNALING: Flowers Book 1, Photos and Queries from early issues is available from the publisher with FR*E*E shipping this month. More info below and on the site.

This week, on his English Education blog, Hank did, in fact, feature a tulip photo from Picture to Ponder with one of his own, the magnolia shown below, in his Poetry from Photos post. Along with a poem inspired by the photos, he wrote about emphasizing contrast in teaching writing. I decided to continue here and extend the “Contrast” conversation from last week’s Picture to Ponder.

Today’s Photos

purple and white pansy

A purple and white pansy that called out to be featured as I was going through photographs for today’s photo. I had already featured the purple
tulip Hank used. I’m thinking the purple in the above is what wanted attention, because of the tulip’s color.

White Magnolia flower photo by Hank Kellner

White magnolia photograph by Hank Kellner. When I clicked on the photo on Hank’s Blog, it felt huge and I wanted to jump into and explore, while at the same time being protected.

Today’s Photo Story –
I’ve pretty much covered the overall story in the introduction above. In relation to contrast, when I looked at the two photos enlarged on Hank’s blog I was struck by several contrasts. In addition to color, there was a difference in the size of enlargements between the two pictures. I commented there at the end of the post and put in a link to a larger tulip, so similar sizes would eliminate that variable.

Then I was very much aware of the difference between the openness of the magnolia, inviting me in, and the closed feeling of my tulip photo, though texturally – in the silkiness – there are some similarities.

Not wanting, as I wrote above, to repeat a recently featured photo in this issue, I went searching for another one, this time more “open”. The pansy is open, but certainly not embracing. And, it presents a whole series of different contrasts when studying it, including the very strong one between the flower and the ground behind it.

No more words on either. I invite you to BE with each, fully for a moment or two, less or more, and simply experience the images.

Self-Reflecting Queries
Last week, I invited you to look at contrasts in your life, particularly visual ones, and to look for things you ordinarily do not see. That, as you know, is an always suggestion with me.

In addition, today I invite you to reflect on and explore “open” and “closed” contrasts in your life. How do things look, how do they feel when they are open? when they are closed?

Check with another person, or two. Is it the same for them? For instance, I could say that the pansy is presenting somewhat of a “wall”, blocking me/us from moving very far in it or beyond. On the other hand, I could interpret it as being welcoming, inviting me into the small opening in the center of its being.

And, it’s all made up. What stories are you making up in your life today? Are they serving you? providing fun? openings for interactions with others?

Thanks for “playing.” As always have fun with these queries and looking/seeing. Also, please post your responses in the COMMENTS section below.

“I bought your eBook earlier today and not only is it well written, the pictures you chose are lovely. The reason I waited so long to purchase was because I’m trying to curb my addiction to books and the clutter they are causing.

The BOOK! – Pictures to Ponder: Inspired Journaling – Print Edition or downloadable eBook – your choice
This morning I read the 10-page preview [link under photo on each of the description pages], and since you were offering it in a eBook format, I just had to indulge one more time. I know this will be a very successful for you. Congratulations!” Eva Macie, Artist

flowers in the book
Click Above to  See Larger Image

GIFT Yourself with the Photos and Queries – Click on eBook to purchase immediate downloadable access

FR*E*E June Shipping for Spiral Bound Book. Choose a flower for the day and prop on your desk for daily inspiration and/or write in the book.

Purchase the eBook and you get a link to download the PDF file which you can print out or simply leave on your computer to pull up whenever you want a lift or inspiration.

At any time you can open up one of the beautiful flowers in PICTURES TO PONDER: Inspired Journaling and fill your screen with it, giving you the ability to “step into” the image.The high resolution, set for printing, has the photographs capable of maintaining their quality at magnification as much as 300%. And, of course, the queries that went with the flowers are here also.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Hank Kellner June 11, 2010 at 6:50 am

Thank you, Sheila, for the wonderful photos you publish. They are simply delightful. What’s more, I’m sure your writings are an inspiration to everyone who reads them. I always bookmark you work for future reference.
Hank Kellner


Sheila Finkelstein June 12, 2010 at 11:23 am

Thanks so much, Hank, for your kind and acknowledging comments. I so appreciate your having initiated our dialogue, ultimately connecting after having been a Picture to Ponder subscriber for several months.

I Loved seeing your book title, WRITE WHAT YOU SEE (link in my post) when I went to YOUR blog, to which I’ve also linked above. Using photos to as writing prompts and to expand “seeing” is so much what I am about, as you know. To see that this is actually being used in High Schools is very gratifying for me.

Looking forward to more connections.


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