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Sun on Japanese maple, by Mike Shell

All life is one, by Michael Austin Shell

—Evergreen Cemetery, Jacksonville, Fl
June 2012

On the floating dock below Bartram Campus of Bolles School, before Friends Meeting a few weekends ago, I looked north into the shadows and saw the scene I have called Glyphs of wood and water. The water so still, the curves of wood almost speaking aloud.

I turned to the south then, where the mid-morning sun reached the creek from above the trees.

Little Pottsburg Creek, below Bartram Campus of Bolles School, by Mike Shell
And so it is.

Blessèd Be,

Friend Wendy has introduced me to a Tibetan Buddhist term for the sort of photography I am drawn to.

As the Miksang Institute for Contemplative Photography website explains,
Miksang is a Tibetan word that translates as “good eye.”

Miksang, at its most basic level, is concerned with uncovering the truth of pure perception. We see something vivid and penetrating, and in that moment we can express our perception without making anything up—nothing added, nothing missing…. One moment, one shot. Graceful Appearance.

“Good” here doesn’t mean good as we usually use the word, as in good or bad. Good here means that our mind is uncluttered by preoccupation, relaxed and open. Its innate nature is clear, brilliant, and extremely precise….

The world becomes a magical display of vivid perception. We can develop the ability to experience and express these experiences precisely through the practice of contemplative photography.


Here is a recent image by Jann Ashworth, whose work I am following on RedBubble.

Raindrops On a Leaf, by Jann Ashworth

And so it is.

Blessèd Be,

Glyphs of wood and water, by Mike Shell (Little Pottsburg Creek, below Bartram Campus of Bolles School, Jacksonville, FL, 10/23/2011)
Read from right to left
Or not
As it seems to you

The meaning is not
In the signs

In the act
Of reading.

Blessèd Be,

Stephen Jay Gould

Our mind works largely by metaphor and comparison, not always (or even often) by relentless logic. When we are caught in conceptual traps, the best exit is often a change in metaphor—not because the new guideline will be truer to nature...but because we need a shift to more fruitful perspectives, and metaphor is often the best agent for conceptual transition. (264)

Bully for Brontosaurus: Reflections in Natural History



Photography on RedBubble

On Attribution

I'm a writer and photographer.

I license my own online work through Creative Commons.

When I cite books or websites, I link to them. When I use images, I add a pop-up title which gives attribution. Also, the image itself usually links to the source website.

Often the images link to very interesting source sites which I am nudging my readers to look at.

Have fun. Be honest. Give attribution!