Weekly Photo Challenge: Reflections

Photographers, like all visual artists, are intrigued by  light.   We train our eyes to notice it bouncing off the surface of objects and creating reflections in unlikely places.

On a recent flight, I looked out the window and spotted the Southwest Airlines logo reflected on the wing of the plane.

Pink Sunset on Southwest Airlines

Pink Sunset on Southwest Airlines

I also spotted the dual reflections of palm trees and a beach in the sunglasses of my dear friend Susan, right before she boarded a cruise ship and headed for the Caribbean.

Susan on Vacation

Susan on Vacation

“Reflection” is also a powerful tool for creative artists who look inside themselves and reveal profound truths through their work.   For me, the French sculptor Auguste Rodin is a truly great artist, who can visualize powerful emotions and thoughts in unyielding mediums like stone and metal.   This sculpture, housed in the Brooklyn Museum, is carved out of highly polished and reflective bronze, so the light rims the edges, creating a glow and animating the work.

Rodin in Brooklyn

Auguste Rodin, Monumental, at the Brooklyn Museum.

And finally, this quote by Jane Austen shows the inherent contradictions of reflection.

“Reflection must be reserved for solitary hours; whenever she was alone, she gave way to it as the greatest relief; and not a day went by without a solitary walk, in which she might indulge in all the delight of unpleasant recollections.”
― Jane Austen

Reflection is solitary, which can be a relief, but it can also dredge up unpleasant thoughts and memories.   As a writer, I value reflection and treasure its illuminating thoughts.   It’s an essential part of my work.  When life becomes hectic and I am deprived of thinking time, I become grumpy and irritable.   I believe I can speak for all artists and say:  without it, our work is flat, dull and superficial.  With it,  we can create our finest work.  But tell me your thoughts.  Do you agree or disagree?

To view other “reflections,” click the links below.

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21 replies »

  1. Great post . I enjoyed the different takes on reflection you spoke of. The wing of the plane is an amazing shot. I wouldn’t have thought of the reflection in the sunglasses. Brilliant. The statue. The Jane Austen quote. Great take on this weeks prompt!!

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  2. I like the analysis of ‘reflections’ and the quote by Jane Austen. I agree that ‘reflections’ are necessary for quality work, and ironically, it is by reaching the depths of the soul that one can at least begin to foster introspection and transform it to artist self-expression.

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  3. Another great comment, Maria! Yes, it is a contradiction, isn’t it? By being more introspective, we can bring forth creative works that we can share with others. –Patti

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