Dunga Brook Diary

The rural life through the lens of an iPhone and notes from the field…

Archive for quotes

John Keats (1795 – 1821)

John Keats (1795 - 1821)

One life,-a little gleam of time between two Eternities.

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Fall Equinox and A Snippet of George Eliot

Fall Equinox and A Snippet of George Eliot

Is not this a true autumn day? Just the still melancholy that I love — that makes life and nature harmonize. The birds are consulting about their migrations, the trees are putting on the hectic or the pallid hues of decay, and begin to strew the ground, that one’s very footsteps may not disturb the repose of earth and air, while they give us a scent that is a perfect anodyne to the restless spirit. Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns. ~George Eliot, letter to Miss Lewis, 1st October 1841

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My third Fall in Central New York!

Yesterday, I drove to Sharon Springs for the HarvestFest and took back roads, it was a blue sky day, the leaves are changing, the corn is blonde.

I LOVE this place. This is the kind of thing that turns me on- a perfect crisp Fall day.

When I left LA , three years ago, I had no idea what to expect. I knew I was going to the east coast, I knew it was somewhere in the middle of NY state. I knew one person, the guy who posted the picture of my house on Facebook (neighbor, Tim), and I knew that the house I bought sight unseen from that post was waiting to be renovated.

I didn’t know where I would work, I didn’t know how far away a grocery store might be (12 miles). I said goodbye to Starbucks (nearest one, 100 miles away) and all the trapping of a city.

Because I had no expectations everything is a bonus.

I am in the middle of nowhere but there are great people here (always great people, no matter where I roam)- Tim has a girlfriend Margo, whom I love and is my photography muse- one of my muses, out here I have so many muses.

The guys who demo’d and rebuilt my house, a fun group of rag tag gypsies, all turned out to have hearts of gold.

I found a job with Beekman 1802 (wholesale director).

I’ve met a fantastic group of women (Leslie, Cheryl, Susan, Carla, Tina, Margo, Kristen, Marjorie, Rose Marie…on and on).

I’ve found a thriving artists community that has a long and storied history from Ginsberg’s beats back to The Hudson River Valley School and before that, settlers and, of course, native Americans artisans.

Recently, I’ve gotten to know one of the rag tag gypsies,  the tall one with the long hair, the one with the tattoo on his bicep, the one with the sexy smile, the one who can repair a stove when the mice have taken over, the one who can play guitar, sing like an angel, chase me like the devil, the one who is sweet sweet sweet…he is a handyman if there ever was one.

The beauty and fun of this place never ceases to thrill me.

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Marilyn, The Peony, Listens To Rilke Sing

Marilyn, The Peony, Listens To Rilke Sing

“Make your ego porous. Will is of little importance, complaining is nothing, fame is nothing. Openness, patience, receptivity, solitude is everything.”

~Rainer Maria Rilke

Home Is Where The Herman Hesse Quote Is

Home Is Where The Herman Hesse Quote Is

“…Trees have long thoughts, long-breathing and restful, just as they have longer lives than ours. They are wiser than we are, as long as we do not listen to them. But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the childlike hastiness of our thoughts achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is. That is home. That is happiness.”
~ Hermann Hesse

A Love Affair Unfolding, Geras-Tousignant Gallery, And A Brush Of Edgar A. Payne

Big News! I am now represented by Geras–Tousignant Gallery in San Francisco (@437 Pacific Avenue).
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“Art comes into being in that abstract interval between a thought and reality, and no one – not even the artist who created it – can remeasure the influences that caused it.” ~ Edgar A. Payne
Two years ago, I bought a house sight unseen from a post on Facebook by a man I barely knew. “Who wants to be my neighbor?” was his query along with the picture of a small white farmhouse mired in snow. It was March. That snow looked fresh. I was in LA, where the sun was relentlessly shining as it had been for the past 25 years of my time there. I was so done with LA, I wanted that little house in the snow dress.
Two years ago, I had no idea what was in store for me. I had a vague idea that I was going to live in a campground for the month of July while my 1820’s farmhouse was being demo’d and renovated. While I was waiting on the house I took photographs with my iPhone. To stay sane.
What I thought might be a few months of renovation stretched into 8 months of waiting deep in the countryside. And, thank god, because of a dearth of cell towers my iPhone didn’t work as a phone anymore and it was only useful as a camera…because between July and January of that year I took over 20,000 photographs with it.
And because I posted so many pictures on my Facebook page, a gallery in central New York asked me to have a show in their gallery. My iPhoneography of the local flora and fauna made people smile, the images moved people and instantly I had collectors who bought multiples of my work.

And now, two months after my first show and two years, almost to the day, of moving to central New York, my iPhoneography takes me all the way back to California to a gallery in San Francisco.

WOW.
See the link below for the images and for more information contact James Scott Geras, gerastousignant@gmail.com 415.986.1647
Thank you, iPhone and thank-you, Margo Steines, Connors Page and Xav Jimenez…my cNY muses.

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.513904978675357.1073741859.100001675783180&type=1

My Artist Statement:
“To deify and illuminate the ordinary, this is what moves me. Each photo is a memory, a photographic attempt at capturing a love affair unfolding- a glimpse of “love at first sight” infused with my present and my past. My daily rebirth is in each frame- a swan dive into the deep end of the pool, lit by color, texture, and emotion. My macro images are meant to convey the glory of nature, things we would never see unless we fell to our knees. One of my life mentors, Miss Pamela des Barres, imagines that if my images were music they would sound like Beethoven, Sinatra and the Beatles combined. I’ll take that.”

Peonies. Enough Said.

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iPhoneography & the black and white via Henri Cartier-Bresson

i love you

“Photographers deal in things which are continually vanishing and when they have vanished there is no contrivance on earth which can make them come back again.”

~Henri Cartier-Bresson

Lately, I have been pushing myself to get better at black and white photography. A good black and white photo seems a poem compared to the novella you find in most of my color photographs. Simple is better. Clear, clean, brilliant, illuminated and ecclesiastical helps.

Here are my most recent attempts.

Best,

V

 

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It’s Spring in Central New York & A Tiny Tutorial via Mary Oliver

It's Spring in Central New York & A Tiny Tutorial via Mary Oliver

“Instructions for living a life.
Pay attention.
Be astonished.
Tell about it.”
― Mary Oliver

Yesterday was a prefect warm and sunny spring day in Central New York.

I live in the country, down a rural road that has little traffic aside from the occasional tractor and day laborer using it as a cut to bigger things, perhaps a town of 200 or more.

There is no town where I live, no there there and that is how I like it, right now.

I lived in Los Angeles before this, another town with no there there but many more people, millions of cars, relentless sunshine and a level of stress that is almost nuclear in its intensity.

Not here.

Yesterday, the spring breeze was smooth, no nip at all, the clouds were white and fluffy and I meant to sit down and tell you about it as it went along.

But I was too busy.

Living in the moment.

I fell into the day like Alice in Wonderland fell into that great hole of wonder…I got lost, I got macro, I got panoramic…one with the earthy and the sky.

Here are a few photographs that document the day.

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https://dungabrookdiary.com/2013/05/19/bright-light-by-greg-dember-vicki-whickers-dunga-brook-diary-iphoneography/

Ladybird Traffic Jam and a kernel of Keats

Ladybird Traffic Jam and a kernel of Keats

“The poetry of the earth is never dead.” ~John Keats

Each morning I rise early to let the dogs out. They frolic around my acre as I scour the lay of the land for the new, the unusual, the “hey, what is that?” and the “woah, that wasn’t there yesterday.”

Each day, no matter how similar, is completely different if you take the time to truly see.

I was sitting under my favorite Frickin Tree (so named because I photograph him/her every single day) and turned over one of the fallen branches beneath it and found this gathering of beetles. I love the yellow one in the middle of it all.

Spring is finally well and truly here and my photographs are multiplying exponentially as are the colors.

What I notice about the spring is how similar it is to fall, there aren’t many leaves on the trees and if you look at a hilly range you will see the same crimsons and yellows as fall as the trees bud out.

This year the Maples are flowering and I feel so lucky to be here, in the middle of it all.

The Indiana Tree For Maili

The Indiana Tree For Maili

http://themailifiles.blogspot.com/2013/04/one-bold-step_30.html

Wow, my friend Maili wrote about my journey on her blog, The Maili Files. She is a wonderful chef, a dedicated mom and a gifted writer.

As I read what she wrote about me, I could feel my heart increasing in size, like the Grinch when he hears the Whos in Whoville sing their song even after he stole all of their Christmas presents.

Well, I didn’t get my presents stolen but I have been, as she wrote, putting one foot in front of the other on this wonderful journey that I embarked upon when I bought a farmhouse, sight unseen, straight from a post on Facebook.

This is just a brief note of gratitude to Maili for following my journey and cheerleading me every step of the way.

I will, of course, return the favor and write about her journey (we are all on a journey) but it may take a bit, she is such a delicious morsel of a human that I want to get it just right.

She admits that she attempted to write about me for a few months and spent the whole day sequestered (in her pjs…shhhhhh) to get it just right. And she did. She got it just right.

So that sound you hear? Its the birds signing in the trees and baby green leaves unfurling and my heart growing three sizes on this gorgeous spring day.

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