Slowfoe, toe?—sew watt! Just charge me up again.

Photography of James Keller

One of my favorite photographers, James has a way that moves people to feel good about expressing themselves in front of his camera.
B&W photos by James Keller.

He has a strong respect for and interest in the individuality of others. Around this time every year we get a postcard, such as this, from James. Its a photographic print.

This one from NYC.

I don’t know any thing about this one . . .

Two generations of cowboy hats.

When I was in art school I was suddenly, with-no-warning, evicted from my apartment, fortunately James allowed me to stay at his house until I could relocate. I say fortunately for me, because James is neater than I am, not that I am a slob, but I have a degree of ADD and can have many in-progress projects in various states of progress going on at once with things piled up in different available-space places.

I shared apartments some different times, but did not slob-up common areas, well maybe once when I took over a room for personal projects, mostly photography and 4′ x 8′ colleges built on a 4′ x 8′ sheet of plywood layed waist high on two saw horses.

Photograph by James of me in Jamaica Plain almost 45 years ago

.Photograph James at Hay Market area Boston, , for 1-2 years we had a moving business together in Boston. It worked well, there are hundreds of colleges and trade schools in Boston, many of the students and some who hang on for a couple of years after graduation, share apartments, have a bed, chest of drawers, clothes, pots, pans, dishes, books, maybe a desk and some lamps, a TV set, sometimes a couch and once a piano and are living in an apartment in Boston. We had a van which held all of the stuff and it was a quick and easy job to move someone. Although technically it was illegal, moving businesses are regulated by both state and federal laws , large legitimate movers were too expensive for our customers and it was not worth their time to do the job. As a bonus it got the big trucks off the city streets.
These images of James were made by me.

Powell Street Station, Market Street, James comes out of the Powell Street Station and immediately finds someone to photograph. I like the clothes on the subject.

Alameda Creek

My weekly images of walking along Alameda Creek this week and words which express some the things about which I think..

It is commonly accepted what is visually experienced in a photograph is a “real visual representation of “things” in the photograph. Often they are conclusive “documentary evidence ” in a court of law. People will use manipulated images to take advantage of people’s tendency to accept a photographic image as an acceptable representation of reality.

Photographs have been around for a “little over” two centuries, or “only” two centuries, both perspectives are interesting. Humans have been on Earth for 300,000 years—that is photographs —images from reflected light— are 0.00000666 % of their history, In a court of law a photograph is usually accepted over a person’s testimony. Yet for much of the 300,000 years a person’s word was likely very important.

When a “non-normal” lens is used, a “fish-eye” for example, we know that what we see is not what it “really looks like,” Imagine if the first time you saw a photograph and it was a fish-eye image of a building ? If you had never seen a photograph before you would probably not know what is a building—hypothetically if you did not know what a building was you would not know the photograph was a visual representation of something or anything.

A camera using a “normal lens (about 50mm focal length for a 35 mm camera) sees like the human eye and by “normal,” one that looks normal to the human eye.  We know other animals may have qualitatively different sensory capabilities such as sonar or a similar sensory experience which varies on a continuum of a quality—more or less.

We probably share many of our senses with other living firms on Earth. And where there are different sensual experiences, still they are used to differentiate the small particles into a common “set of things”  People “see” the mountain; a bat sonars the mountain; different senses but a common conclusion from differentiating and defining.  Or smell, both people and dogs can smell but the dog has a great capability doing this then do people.

Would it be the same for aliens from other galaxy ? Is there a finite number of “things” in the universe? Are they evenly distributed in the universe? Are “things” relative?

The first question—obviously life forms in the universe are made up of particles—call them“things”, if there are a finite number of things then the probably increases the chance for similarity of life forms by a limited poolof particles.

Second, how are particles distributed around the universe gives a feeling for their availability to be used which cold differ from regionally.

Third, relativity —any “thing” in the Universe means particles are “sensed” or “known to be a thing.” Does the thing actually exist “in nature” or is it a thing relative to the capabilities of some other thing observing it —subject versus object, thought we did that hundreds of years ago.

Waiting in the car outside Marina grocery store Union City CA


The sky is densely clouded, the forest is dark with Tamala trees; Krishna is afraid of the night .
O Radha, you alone must take him home. This is Nanda’s command.
But Radha and Krishna linger near a tree in the grove on their homeward path
To the bank of river Yamuna and their secret love prevails
Illustration of the first verse of the first canto of the Gita Govinda from The Blue God Lalit Kala Akademi
(Krishna and Radha are on the left.)

I Ching

I Ching is a a very old book. Fu Xi studied the interactions of Yin and Yang in th erelationship of Heaven, Earth and People and delivered the eight trigrams —八卦; bāguà—graphically representing the possible relationships between Heaven, Earth and People. They were arranged into the 64 hexagrams by King Wen —before he became King because he was a hostage. The Duke of Zhou wrote some commentary, the book was known as Zhōu Yì or Changes of Zhou—this all happened BCE. In the later Han dynasty many of the writings of and about Zhōu yì were consolidated, standardized, probably edited and re-assembled to be called the I Ching.

Previous posts presented examples of the hexagram Hsiao Kuo showing the possible changes of one line, two lines and three lines moving. Here are the possibilities of one hexagram Hsiao Kuo and four moving lines.

About 1970 I bought the Wilhelm/Baynes version I Ching with the forward by Carl Jung. I was an instructor of Sociology then and more focused on academic matters. Later I became a graphic designer (for over 35 years) and in my recent renewed interest I am first focusing on visual experiences of I Ching. This is a long term project on which I do a little every week as my eyes gradually learns to see.

The same thirteen pairs of hexagrams without the “descriptive words” enable easier visual experience of the relations between Yin and Yang from the possible movement of four lines in the hexagram Hsiao Kuo. Every understanding or interpretation of the original hexagram, here it Hsiao Kuo, may be affected by the moving line(s).

Photo of me by James Keller, about 1972-73

The Heart Sutra is a teaching by the Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara, the Buddha of Compassion, to the monk Shariputra:

. . . all dharmas are forms of emptiness, not born, not destroyed;
Not stained, not pure, without loss, without gain;
So in emptiness there is no form, no sensation, conception, discrimination, awareness; No eye, ear, nose, tongue, body, mind;
No color, sound, smell, taste, touch, phenomena;
No realm of sight . . . no realm of consciousness;
No ignorance and no end to ignorance . . .
No old age and death, and no end to old age and death;
No suffering, no cause of suffering, no extinguishing, no path;
No wisdom and no gain. No gain and thus
The bodhisattva lives prajna paramita
With no hindrance in the mind, no hindrance, therefore no fear,
Far beyond deluded thoughts, this is nirvana.

excerpt from Heart Sutra

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