Monday, July 22, 2013

A Cosmic Nest (w/ footnote) (& A Restored Musical Link)

A Cosmic Nest - digital - 2013, DS
(Click to enlarge.)

"... I also realized (in the dream) that the universe was not infinite, but, was like a round area bordered by a ring of space which was a different dimension bordered by other dimensions. (?) The Saturn-shape comes to mind.

Also, there are other universes next to this one... as there are other galaxies and solar systems. The pattern of eternity (this universe arrangement) would look like a field w/ all these Saturn-shapes polka-dotting it."

- quote (recounting an actual dream) from a 1975 personal journal, via an excerpt from: "Temp L (The Temple Drawings)" - unpublished project record -1982, Dia Sobin

"Many modern theories of fundamental physics predict that our universe is contained inside a bubble. In addition to our bubble, this `multiverse' will contain others, each of which can be thought of as containing a universe. In the other 'pocket universes' the fundamental constants, and even the basic laws of nature, might be different.

Stephen Feeney, a PhD student at UCL who created the powerful computer algorithm to search for the tell-tale signatures of collisions between "bubble universes," and co-author of the research papers, said: "The work represents an opportunity to test a theory that is truly mind-blowing: that we exist within a vast multiverse, where other universes are constantly popping into existence."

- via this Science Daily article, dated August 3, 2011


Flat Disks vs. Bubbles

Everybody dreams, and dreams come in a variety of flavors: mundane, romantic, other-worldly, prescient, wish-fulfilling, historical, etc.  The truly transpersonal "cosmic" dreams are rare, but, when you have one, you tend to want to share it. It took me over 30 years to "share" this one of mine... and then, only because it inspired an image, "A Cosmic Nest" (above).

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Flatbed Scan of a Summer Flower

Begonia blossom scan - 2013, DS
(click to enlarge)

As an artist, despite all the scientifically-documented neurological, psychological & pathologlogical excuses for my existence, isn't the need for beauty the real bottom line?

And, in the event that every living organism has consciousness and sentience to some degree, isn't it possible that the expression of beauty - and the appreciation thereof - is as innate, inherent and essential to life, as any scientifically-accepted, well-documented mechanism to survive?

I scanned this begonia into the computer today, because I wanted to record it exactly as it was. I suppose that's what my scanning exercises amount to lately... along with a sort of subliminal attempt to understand transdimensionalism, albeit in reverse... that is, translating higher (3) dimensions into lower (2).

But, that's not the reason I posted it.

I posted it because it's beautiful.

Enjoy your summer.


Tech Note: Concerning flatbed scans of 3-D objects (also referred to, on this blog, as "live scans"). There's a plethora of info on the web describing the ways and means to perfect this type of image document, if you're interested. The most important factor in taking a good scan is having a scanner capable of copying 3-D objects... not all of them can. The ones which can, generally indicate this on the box description. Also, they often have a fluorescent light bar, which captures a greater depth of field than LEDs. And, by "scanner" I'm not referring to expensive equipment or anything having to do with the new 3-D printing technology. A dedicated scanner is imperative, however - forget "all-in-one's"!

Tech Note 2: To avoid a "pressed flower" look to a scanned flower image, leave a stem on your flower, and then try constructing a truncated cone around the flower head that will separate the flatbed glass from the flower petals. I used black paper for this - black is generally the best ground - with some degree of success. But, the contours of the cone are key, as well as the depth. The flower has to fit exactly and its petals should just brush the glass. Best bet? A fairly flat, rigid flower.

Tech Note 3: Except in the instance of a very flat object (like a house key, for example), you will either be leaving the scanner cover open, or taking it off altogether. Back-lighting may be an interesting effect on occasion, but I find it helpful to have a several boxes - lined in black - of various depths on hand to cover the scanner bed while shooting. Another possibility is a blanket of fabric, normally cut to the dimensions of the scanner bed, unless the "draped fabric" effect is a desirable background. Fabric, incidentally, scans fabulously!

Begonia blossom - 2016, 2013, DS

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Anthracite Coal & Graphite

2 scans of a small slab of anthracite - 2013, DS
(click to enlarge)

I guess I feel obligated to finish my "Black Rock" series (started here & continued here). So, here's the "big reveal".

Well, it's like this: one can't write on a hard, granulated surface with obsidian... however, with anthracite coal you can. Which is how I now know that all my mysterious black rocks - despite how iridescent and pretty they may be - are, in the last analysis, anthracite coal. The ones with a more silvery sheen, however, make finer, more pencil-like lines, which sent me on a google search for graphite; apart from being pencil lead, I never did know exactly what it was.

Actually, the game was really given away when I found the anthracite slab above... which is glassy in the center, but, the surface of which is similar to a shimmery black poster board. Whatever it was, it wasn't obsidian.

(Note: It was also easy to pry apart in layers... and, though I still hadn't concluded it was coal, I still half-expected to find a fossil. In reality, one can find fossils in slabs of coal... and, two things on my "bucket-list" are: finding a meteorite, and finding a fossil!)

Anyway, I now know that anthracite coal is a mineral and the high-carbon metamorphic state of bituminous - ordinary household - coal. Interestingly, anthracite may be considered to be a transitional stage between ordinary bituminous coal and graphite, the latter often considered to be meta-anthracite and/or the last - and purist - metamorphic stage of coal.

Well, yeah, I guess I had hoped my mystery rocks were obsidian... but, anthracite and graphite are not the lowly, mere utilitarian minerals one might expect. Anthracite was a common replacement for jet in all that wonderful Victorian mourning jewelry... and it's been carved into sculptures as well. And, the same goes for graphite! The two beautiful figures above - the hand and shell (above, left) - were carved from graphite by Angelio Batle, found here, along with a number of others. And the graphite quill (above, right) is just one example of a whole series of really cool, carved graphite pencils (one can write with!) for sale here.

And, so ends the tale of the mysterious black rocks... ;-)


Restore the 4th (& steal this banner!)

Monday, July 1, 2013

Obsidian Glass (& a "moon rock") (?)

2 scans of the latest found object - 2013, DS
(click to enlarge)

"Seek and ye shall find"! 

Actually, this is rarely true in my experience... but, I did find what I was looking for at the beach yesterday (see previous post): obsidian glass. Of course, it's so glass-like, it's practically impossible to scan, but, this should give you some idea. It has a slight rainbow flash, but nothing like in the scan - more like the colors one sees in a crow's feather.

And, I also found a lunar rock! Okay, so, it's not really a lunar rock - just another specimen of volcanic rock with a lot of obsidian. It's blacker than it appears in the scan, though; it also has a very silvery sheen to it... 

Scan of the "moon rock" - 2013, DS
(click to enlarge)

Later note: Actually, the true identity of these rocks is still in doubt. I suppose virtually anything can be found on a shoreline, but, we are talking about a Connecticut shoreline... (see the comment section of this post). So, ladies & gentlemen, the jury is still out.

The jury's in... see: Anthracite & Graphite.