#35 Zen Your Photography (Becoming Present with Vision)

Shoshin (初心) is a word from Zen Buddhism meaning "beginner's mind." It refers to having an attitude of openness, eagerness, and lack of preconceptions when studying a subject, even when studying at an advanced level, just as a beginner would. (from Wikipedia)

A camera is a device that teaches us to see without a camera.
— Dorthea Lange
Fig1_Yarbus115.png

When you look around, your eye does one of two things. It sometimes can follow a moving point around the visual field (smooth pursuit movements”) but most the time it zips from point to point. The zips, called “saccades” are the fastest human muscle movement. We don’t perceive the saccades, and even when we land on a spot with our eyes (generally for a few milliseconds), we zip off again to another spot, and through this weird scanning we take in a scene. This spot is falling on our fovea, a tiny part of our retina with a high density of image receptors — everything outside of this little area is pretty blurry. We can sense motion and other bits of data out there, but for the most part, we “see” only what lands on the fovea. The content not specifically picked up in this saccade is filled in by our brains — with what we think should be there, what fits with the rest of the data we have, perhaps what we expect to see there.

 Eye tracking software is big business today, where it’s important to everyone from interface designers to advertisers very invested in where you look and for how long. Tune into your own curiosity and what catches your eye.

Eye tracking software is big business today, where it’s important to everyone from interface designers to advertisers very invested in where you look and for how long. Tune into your own curiosity and what catches your eye.


 Crows, Santa Fe (2018)

Crows, Santa Fe (2018)

DSCF0399-2.jpg
DSCF0399.jpg
 (1964) An inventor and an artist, Dr. Harold Edgerton, a professor at MIT, pioneered the strobe flash, stop-action photography and a method of taking super-fast images called Rapatronic.

(1964) An inventor and an artist, Dr. Harold Edgerton, a professor at MIT, pioneered the strobe flash, stop-action photography and a method of taking super-fast images called Rapatronic.


 “Kara Walker exploded onto the art scene in 1994 at the age of 24 with work that shocked many, and at the same time, made her one of the leading artistic voices on the subject of race and racism.”   https://westburyarts.org/celebrating-black-history-kara-walker/

“Kara Walker exploded onto the art scene in 1994 at the age of 24 with work that shocked many, and at the same time, made her one of the leading artistic voices on the subject of race and racism.”

https://westburyarts.org/celebrating-black-history-kara-walker/


If you like our show, please subscribe on iTunes, Google Play, or your favorite podcasting app, and please rate the podcast. And don’t forget to join the Neomodern Facebook group to discuss the show, share your photos, hear about specials for printing or framing your best images. Thank you!