Tag Archives: still life photography

Plants and Planets

13 Jul

In the past botanists such as Nicholas Culpeper associated plants with the planets, fixed stars and zodiac signs. The attributions were based on an intense study of a plant’s features, which included treats such as a thorny or prickly appearance, the scent emitted by the flowers or the entire plant, the plant’s life cycle, colors, metals contained in a plant, medicinal and other uses and of course plenty of folklore. Today plants are classified scientifically based on their genome, but their planetary lore is preserved and continues to evolve in the books of authors such as Stephen Skinner, Paul Huson, Scott Cunningham, Harold Roth and so on.

I find it fun and inspiring to continue this tradition and to explore its own inner logic. And since I spent the past 3 weeks gardening, I took to it and photographed the recent herb harvest according to the planets. The following series follows the Chaldean sequence. Photos by myself. Please share and credit.

Please visit my garden blog for further info on plants and their planetary correspondences: https://pflanzenkunst.wordpress.com/planetary-correspondences/

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Gallery

Flowers of Death

7 May

Death Posture (Mortificatio)

29 May

Death posture II

Death Posture

Found a dead hornet on the floor. It looked as if some invisible hand had placed it there. No signs of violence, except for some white excretion around the stinger. A few days earlier I had seen a huge hornet in our apple tree. The presence of such animal, dead or alive, naturally evokes feelings of unease and discomfort. Yet it was fascinating to get closer. I call the photo “death posture”, not necessarily in reference to something esoteric or spiritual. I rather found the position interesting, which the animal takes upon death with legs crossed to a triple “X”. It’s deader than dead, but there is still a cold stare.

Harvest Circles and other Compositions

30 Dec
Fungi collection, 2013

Fungi collection, 2013

Find updated the site’s Art section, to which has been added amongst others a new page for “assemblage” works, which includes old and new pieces.

Assemblage is an artistic process. In the visual arts, it consists of making three-dimensional or two-dimensional artistic compositions by putting together found objects.

Usually this refers to fixed creations constructed from various elements, which may or may not be movable. I am expanding the term as I also group temporarily assembled objects into that category. You find there for example my “Harvest Circle” series and various other loose compositions, which are put together only for the moment of the photo and later re-used for other purposes. E.g. the dried herbs, fungi and flowers may be utilized by Occvlta jewellery in the creation of unique pendants and artefacts. Yet these temporary works have a point and meaning of their own and may talk to the viewer in different ways. Technically these could be considered still lifes, however I feel the elements are literally assembled, and the process and style of the compositions are closer to assemblage than classical still life.

Central to the work are the dried (and dead) parts of plants, from seed to root, from flower to fruit and everything in between. Usually the material is derived from plants I have grown and harvested by myself. Hence another working title for these compositions is “Dead & Arranged”. Below are some more examples.

In the future I consider doing fixed assemblages in the manner pictured, however I am still researching techniques and materials.

Complementary

17 Sep

Belladonna placed between newspaper pages for drying

2 Seed Pods, 94 Photos

3 Sep
Henbane Seed Pods

Henbane Seed Pods

 

2 Seed Pods, 94 Photos

2 Seed Pods, 94 Photos

When working with herbs I also document some aspects and details. With some herbs I focus on the dried fruits and seeds and photograph them as random still lifes, experimenting with light and shadow. I do that as time permits, working on a little series there. Today Henbane in.