InSight [Inspiring Visual Worship]

Prague 03 New Town

Prayer Offering at St. Ignatius

3rd Day (2nd Day Out w/the Cameras) NEW TOWN new format.

As I pondered my next post, I thought of it starting something like this, “Nine hours walking cold cobblestone streets with 25 pounds slung over my shoulder is why Aspirin was invented.”

With each day of shooting comes a day and half of editing and post work, add another 1/2 day for the blog update and that means 3 days per outing. This doesn’t work for the time I have and the amount of images there are to acquire. That means something has to go. I have decided it is the Blog – at least in the current format.

I would love to keep everyone abreast of my travel, the sites, what I did, etc. but to be honest, that is not really what I had intended for the Blog. Although I am shooting more than consecrated spaces, as it is in my nature and curiosity for human activity that also propels the camera to my eye, or the embrace of sunlight to define an object from the shadow, the beautiful caress of an image to light the imagination… this Blog was to bring attention to and discuss the importance of Consecrated Space. I will share those photos with everyone on my list when I get back to the states.

With production hours in mind, I will have to produce fewer galleries as they take up the most time. When I have time I will post the galleries in a page that will be aptly named, “GALLERIES” and it will be located in the above drop down nav in the black bar called, “Pages”. I don’t know how many of those I will get to.

Something about a photo:
Photos have a life of their own. Though they are pictures of something that exists and was encountered, they are not that (they are … pictures, not the thing or the event). A photo tells its own story since it is removed from the event and the thing it echoes. Add to that the eye of the photographer and selective choice in bringing the image to the viewer, not to mention what the viewer brings to the image, how the image resonates with their feelings, thoughts… and it has its own life as a different creation. Like paintings, when unpacked, discussed, shared, they are a bridge on which dialog is met between people, and in the exchange of thoughts and feelings, abstract and intimate alike, we part with a piece of each other.

With that said, let US try something with this blog. If you are game.

I was hoping we could all share.

Here is what I would want from this Blog time in the new format. I will share a image or two from the day and describe as best I can a little of the scene and what was going on, how it sits with me in reflection. For those interested in my work, this is for you. Don’t feel obligated to write anything. If you want to tell me you like it, or offer greetings, or encouragement (and I always like those things), please email me instead of putting it in the Blog: ~Also – if you have a technical question, email me. If you want to know if I tried the Czech beer yet, email me (I have – light and dark – exquisite). Email Email Email.

For the Blog, I would like it if we made it less about me and less about Prague and more about the consecrated space/art as experienced in the imagery I capture. IF an image speaks to you in some way please share how, what, or when, or wax on poetically if it so inspires such an outpouring. A poem. A personal reflection. A confession. Why do you feel something powerful or unsettling of a picture?.. the deeper you go with your sharing the closer we come to the spirit. I will try my best to do my part.

So here is the first image. While in New Town, Prague, I stepped into the Baroque styled Church of St. Ignatius. The second I stepped in, a woman looking to be in her 80s, motioned to me to take of my beanies (I am wearing two these cold days). I just shaved my head the night before, and it was cold. This was to be the protocol.

Throughout my time in St. Ignatius, people wandered in, took a pew and prayed. One man even prayed for the longest time on his knees, up front, right aisle, on the cold marble floor. I stood transfixed watching his devotion in respect, then it donned on me to take a photo. By the time I went to position, he was done. Then I turned and saw this woman looking at the alter between reflection and praying. I took several from the front and this one from behind. The light fell on her as if in grace (it is more evident in the front photos). But here is what struck me in this photo as the woman lifted her head to look at the alter again, above and behind her is the risen Christ, hand extended offering us His pierced flesh to examine while His other hand at His chest cups the Sacred Heart. He is risen and in rays of glory, on a cloud and surrounded by proclamating angels. In this photo, like an emanation appearing above the woman, I think of His Grace. Like an emanation that lives in our knowing, one that is with us, with me, and when I consider it, I am moved to prayer.

The images and the art in a church, have more power in reflection than they necessarily do in the moment (as do most things). I will mention such an experience I had yesterday (Prague 04) from the Church of St. Giles.

One Response to “Prague 03 New Town”

  1. Ken Mattson says:

    There is one thing that you can do in Prague that you can’t do at home: that’s take pictures of Prague.
    When you get back to Laguna you can spend days, weeks or months writing about your pictures and experiences, you can make web sites and galleries up the yang. And anybody who needs it can get that from you – (at that time).

    But NOW while you have spent so much money getting there just BE THERE.
    FORGET all about us back here basically – IF you want to post us a good picture now and then, great, but don’t WASTE ANY precious time in Prague doing what you can do at home. If I didn’t hear from you for a month but knew in exchange that you were FULLY immersed in Prague taking pictures, wandering around, encountering life I’d be happier than knowing that you spent ANY time in Prague in front of a computer moniter!

    One reason is because while you are making “galleries” you could be making art (or drinking with someone interesting).

    But the other more important reason is that if you aren’t writing about the pictures, maybe you can get out of your head.
    Take pictures, ask questions later.

    A LOT of artists use words to prop up their artwork, (because they feel insecure about not having a real job, or because their work is crap). You NEVER need to do that Jeff – YOU are a brilliantly gifted visual artist, leave the writing for those who can’t make great pictures.
    Get in the zone, make love to the muse – be lost there – it’s your gift!
    Pour yourself into making the art!
    Love, Ken

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