My grey shun

The fall is persimmon time.

This year I mix them with Trader Joe’s oatmeal, two minutes in the microwave, add some California raisins and almonds, another 30 seconds, then add persimmon (or apple or banana) and a little milk—protein, vitamins and carbs..

The moon far away . . .

and nearby is our faith in a near consumer economy.

Alameda Creek

Human beings—Homo sapiens—have been around for about 300,000 years..

Rome., Greece, China, MIddle East, , Aztecs, Incas, the Eurasian Steppes, wes3 of the Jade Gate — for peoples all over the world, primary written knowledge of the history of human beings is limited, give it 4000 years to be generous . . . or include art as an expression of primary evidence, painted images go back to 45000 years ago or on the Iberian Peninsula where art is dated to 64,000 years ago.

300,000/6000= 1/500 = 0.02 or or 0.2 %

Human life as we know it is about 0.2% of the history of the human species.yet is only the last 150 years that “technologically advanced civilized” humans‚ have created nuclear weapons and altered the global climate in their drive for more and more wealth

Its interesting how we see history, for example, when using the symbols BC and Ad , or symbols BCE and CE or where ever humans choose to designate the concept of something unknown , when they choose to divide the continuum of history from an unknown past to the known present on to the unknown future. Both ends, the past and future are undetermined—unknown— and yet we do not let that “unknown” bother us from our daily life in the middle—Its November 20, 2021, who cares about any other time, out of sight, out of mind.

Show me your face before you were born . . . why can‘t we remember the future? . . . What was happening before The Big Bang?

Life forms on Earth have all figured out a way to survive as a species. Survival of the fittest —reproductive success. No life forms are separate, they are all inter-related and part of why we survive on Earth

Here we are on Earth, our home in the Universe, the one planet in one solar system, out of billions of solar systems in one galaxy out of billions of galaxies in a Universe which is expanding. Will human beings survive long enough to have to migrate in search of another sun?

For 300,000 years humans have been living on Earth and increasingly we are learning that during that time many people traveled extensively , and in hard times when the fitness part of “survival” moved people to migrate, long before there were kings, or warlords, or geo-political nation states with “national boundaries” defended by standing armies paid for by taxes legitimized by the idealogical license of “National Sovereignty.” Migrating is what people naturally do. its geo-political entities with tax payer funded standing armies which is is unnatural

“Capitalism” —an economic and political system in which a country’s trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit, rather than by the state.— (Oxford Languages)

Or—
Capitalism is often thought of as an economic system in which private actors own and control property in accord with their interests, and demand and supply freely set prices in markets in a way that can serve the best interests of society. The essential feature of capitalism is the motive to make a profit. (Wikopedia).

The internet enables the world to inter-connect instantly and constantly —as long as there is electricity, which has to be produced. For the first time in history people all around Earth see other people, other societies, and compare themselves and dream of something better for themselves.and their families.

“Economically successful” western societies have developed consumer markets where fashionable new products are constantly created to compete for discretionary monies —planned obsolescence—and for many individuals in the developing world, the global economy is their chance to participate in a market with lower prices and better quality products—if only the “developed countries” actually believed in free markets.

For so many new products its cheaper to just take another piece of Earth from “over there“, bring it over here and make some new things to sell in the market, and just throw the old thing away, “over there, ” please, not here.

“Every proposition  on Earth can be figured on a basis of profit and loss and there is no other practical way to figure anything.”

.“When I say profit, I mean earned profit, but not in the  legal sense I mean earned   “De facto,”  and not “de jure”.”

“Take the income I will earn for the rest of my life from the ownership of stock  in Southdown Incorporated, that is called “unearned income” but actually I have earned it by years of of devoted service I have rendered to the company. I have earned it because I deserve it. But as a contrast  take the  profit, the income that Sarah Jaffe has been getting from her ownership of stock since the death of her father. Mrs. Jaffe, I’d like to ask you what have you ever done for the  corporation .Tell me one single thing  small or large. Your average income in Southdown dividends for the past five years has been more than 40,000 dollars, have you earned one cent of it? 

My father did the earning,.”she said

But you personally ?

No of course not, I’ve never earned anything 

Prisoners Base, a NeroWolfe novel by Rex Stout

Every person on this Earth has a birth right to life., still after 300,000 years of homo sapiens and 4-5 thousand years of “civilization”, humans still delight in finding reasons to murder each other .

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For over three years I was personally involved with the care of mom, she had a stroke with severe memory loss and expressive aphasia. She lived in a memory facility and was in rehab for a couple of months.

Being involved in the care of one’s parent is a privilege and honor. For what ever reason one gets chosen even if its by default.

It takes a lot of time.

At rehab, she was there for eight weeks, the sliding front door was locked, needed a “buzz” to get in. Mom always curious and anxious to get outside would sit by the front door. When someone approached the door and the buzzer rang she would be waiting to make her escape by zooming out the door.

The staff let her roam around the facility in her wheel chair and she would visit other patients and give opinions to the professional caregivers as to “what they were doing wrong.”

My mother’s name was Lynn, which was also the name of town north of Boston, this railroad line ran through Union Square, Somerville, I would assume it might go there. Photo circa 1970

Gate gate, paragate, parasamgate, Bodhi Svaha.

Know thing two no

One hundred years ago daily life was very different:

Bought out sugar by the hundred pounds, especially in preserving time, and I remember my father would send to Montgomery Ward (at that time they sold groceries) or Sears and Roebuck and buy a hundred pounds of rolled oats or hundred pounds of rice and a hundred pounds of prunes, and it’d come sacked up, get big sacks.

Lennie Hern, age 90, Decautur County, from Feeding our Families Memories of Hoosier Homemakers published May 1983

What is this world we live in now?

A society where our lives are working to get money to consume things—food, shelter, clothes, entertainment, medical care—and the making of those things we consume, as well as the cleaning up after we consume them, are destroying Earth..

Life on Earth is the whole of what people do, it is not what some people do while what other people do is not life. And money is an important part of it.

How do we understand money?

Money enables a sustainable society—a group of people— in which individuals can produce products which have different levels of demand by different individuals in the society over a period of time and everyone can get enough wealth to live, hopefully to live well enough so that violent change over the distribution of life’s basic needs is no needed—social cohesiveness.

In a society where trade and barter are the only production and distribution , the products in their market are very limited and most people can produce most of their needs by themselves.

As society develops people who produce coats have a different market demand than people who produce lettuce than those who produce cars and so on.. After the coat producer trades a coat to a farmer, it maybe years before the farmer needs another coat but the coat producer needs needs food on a short term regular basis.

The work of both, the tailer and the farmer, is represented by money which enables product exchange to happen and results in a more technologically advanced but more inter-dependent society where money is an important part of a stable society.

Alameda Creek

I try to walk daily along Alameda Creek, leaving my house I see my neighbors, stretch out a little and and listen to podcasts and think about “things,” — “Is there such a thing as “Human Nature”?.”

“Its human nature!!, thats why” Is there such a thing as “Human Nature”?

If there is such a “thing” What would it mean? That behavour defined as“ Human Nature” is caused, or determined—by a common Universal law that determines all human beings will behave in accordance with—We all do it!

Its a quality which is a part of every person, we would all have it and it would be expressed in our common behaviour.

Would we have the same amount of human nature or is it distributed among individuals on a continuum — some individuals might have more or less of it than others. John behaves with more compassionate than does Jill, Jill has more artistic talent than John.

Prhaps in the name of “learning” we apply interval level math to measure it — John is 6 1/2 inches taller than Jill who weights 54 pounds less than John. who lives 20 minutes further from work than does Jill. Or we could say, John is taller than Jill who weighs less than John and it takes him longer to drive to work.

As each person travels through Space-Time, their life is a unique path, perhaps comparing and then ranking the path of each individual using an independent standard makes it easier to objectify other people and miss out on the wonders of their lives.

There is a road, no simple highway
Between the dawn and the dark of night
And if you go no one may follow
That path is for your steps alone

Ripple, Grateful Dead

Each path is separate, no matter how often the pushback tells you its the same, uneventful path as so many others.

Human nature is embedded in our biological material existence, humans do not have sonar like bats; gills like fish; a nose like a dog, we have our own human nature.

On those clearly human qualities, such as the five senses,we find some people are naturally born without them—such as sight or hearing—and we refer to them with words which suggest “not a complete person”—yet wherever there is a a society of humans living there are some who are born blind and some who are born deaf ———where is the concept of common human nature now?

Or is it that “the qualities we associate with the definition of ‘Human Nature’ not only are distributed in varying degrees among individuals but in some individuals are actually not present— think of compassion, empathy and remorse.

We say: Its human nature to want more than you have; its human nature to cheat people when you can get away with it; its human nature to be lazy; When we say this we asset that all people are thus driven to behave badly by the very condition of of being human.And when we make that judgement we come to the “obvious conclusion ” that the purpose of law in a society is prevent people from doing bad.

But humans did not start out with the ability to know this, they only got there after doing a lot of really bad things to others along the way, inhumane stuff, like killing others and stealing property and making law and order as a tool l to defend from others what the group in power stole in the first place,. This is why law without justice for the past is always just more of the problem.

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For a period of time the Fogg exhibited three small, same-size, Rembrandt paintings at the same time right next to each other, head shots of himself, his father and Christ, and while they were hanging oI often stopped in to see them—The Fogg was free then but that was over 40 years ago, there may be entrance fees now.

Man is part of Nature. Therefore human creativity is part of Nature’s productivity. In Man, Nature has arrived at self-awareness.
Friedrich Schelling (1775-1854)

We are what we look like, by definition anyway —”I see you coming down the street,or I recognize you in the photograph.

We all know, its common knowledge, its common sense, there is more to our self but its not immediately known solely by being seen.

In popular media such as film and TV, for actors their “physical self” is the stock and trade, or at least the pass to getting in the door for the next job..

How can we not know ourselves? . . . might as well ask . . .

How can we knot no ourselves?

Sometimes it was too mis-leading to get my heard around it . .

Like an epiphany which increasingly mismanages me daily.

I was like a shadow always looking for new ways to see things,

That’s how I got here in the last and first place.

Embed yourself in your own nature and your own tailwind will seek you out.

Brush painting by Janney

Gate Gate Paragate Parasamgate Bodhisvaha

Kǒng Fūzǐ an’ Metwo

Like many, I enjoy eating potato chips, too much. Once I open the package I cannot stop eating until they are all gone— I can stop, roll up the bag, put a rubber band around it and put it into the pantry, but it won’t be long until I’m back there removing the rubber band, unrolling the bag and munching and crunching again. By the end of the day I will have eaten 80% of the bag, if not all.
My solution has been to buy a bag of chips, put it into the pantry, and never open it. After a few months the chips are too stale to eat so I do not open it and when I go to the store and feel the desire to buy chips I remind myself —No Need Steve! There already is a bag in the pantry—its a fool’s argument but it seems to do the job.

However the downfall is at some point, maybe every 2-3 years I am overcome by the desire, I break open the bag of stale chips and start eating. Its a fool’s errand—I pay for them, but wait until they are stale to eat them.

This time of year we have persimmons on the tree in the back yard.

I Ching

Traditionally yarrow stalks were used to consult the I Ching. Later coins were used, they are simpler and easily available. Three coins are used, thrown six times, once for each line. Heads are counted as a three (3) and tails as a two (2) and add to determine each line. A six or a seven is a yin (broken) line and an 8 or 9 is a yang or solid line. Also a six or a nine is an active line “moving” to its opposite. Count from the bottom, a 9 in the first and fifth lines mean the yin lines are moving to yang lines and a 6 in the sixth yin line is moving to a yang line. The hexagram changes, both hexagrams have their own unique set of attributes which work together in harmony, as one changes to the other.

The Judgement
Waiting. If you are sincere,
You have light and success.
Persevervance brings good fortune.
It furthers one to cross the green water.
The Image
Clouds rise up to heaven:
The image of Waiting.
Thus the superior magnets and drinks.
Is joyous and of good cheer.
The Judgement
Keeping Still, Keeping his back still
So that he no longer feels his body.
He goes into his courtyard
And does not see his people.
No blame.
The Image
Mountains standing close together:
The image of Keeping Still.
Thus he superior man
Does not permit his thoughts
To go beyond his situation.

A beautiful design on a shirt for the Annual Lummi canoe journey. The Lummi People are the original inhabitants of Washington’s northernmost coast and southern British Columbia. For thousands of years they lived on the shores and waters of Puget Sound.

Water Margin

Trapped at White Tiger Sanctum, Picture Stories from Chinese Classics, illustrated by Yen Meihua Beijing Zhaohua Publishing House.

A tale from Water Margin illustrated and published as a book of illustrations in 1982. One thing about illustrations is often its the “unimportant things” in an illustration that are interesting to people years later. This cover illustration is four color process but the brown at the bottom is a separate flat color and on the back the photograph is printed in the brown color with a screen of it. Printed on uncoated textured stock so probably no varnish.
Lin Chong , aka “Panther Head,” confronting Young Master Gao Yanei for making sexual advances on his wife. As Gao was a higher status it resulted in Lin Chong being sent to prison. Another hao han(好漢), “Hero of the Swamp” unjustly mistreated by corrupt government officials.

Stopped and stared at, at a red light, 1970, in Brighton, from the drivers seat I picked up the camera and shot.

Alameda Creek

Fast walking along the levee on Alameda Creek, almost every day since the Covad. Four miles, though not exactly every day sometime more sometimes less, Does it get boring??

This just popped up one day, I do not remember exactly not seeing it, except I know for over 10 years I did not see it. Lately I passed it a few times, I kind of remember seeing it but not stopping to look—

Someone suggested to me that I should not have so many photographs and less words, Make It Shorter!!!

Part of designing is to crop photographs. Most, probably all, photographers compose (design?) the photograph in the camera for a “Good full frame” final image.

As a marcom art director I always wanted photographs to have some cropping space for “unknown now but in future” marketing ideas where generally the dimensions of the space were different in size and shape requiring different croppings of the image.

Would it make any difference if you could see this person’s face, for me its enough to just feel the commitment to the walk in the gesture.

We don’t know what the person looks like, where they are going, or why they are going, these do not matter. A photograph does not have to be anything real or unreal, Its a real photograph whether its real or not.

Separate the image from the medium, the photograph is the medium, and not the image. Or for some the image is the photograph, and first, before the visual experience, they want know “What is it?” Is there a witness? Is there a word for it!!

All of these people walking around on their own, nothing I can do to stop them, I will never meet them, they have families, they eat, poop and sleep. But sometimes I do stop them, talk and get to know a little about them, and them about me. Some I have seen for years, met and never knew.

The rice grown formerly in Korea to serve to the Yi king was extremely delicious. The harvest was small, but each grain was well formed and a pleasure to look at. The only drawback was that was so tasty that it couldn’t be served when some other dish to be the centerpiece. That may sound strange, but all rice is tasty to begin with. Rice is the summum bonus of all that is good to eat—which is why w can eat it day in and day out without tiring of it.
Rosanjin 1947 UNCOMMON CLAY The life and Pottery of Rosenjin Cardozo & Hirano

I think of these people as inhabitants of another world that I can only know by these photographs, I can only observe them from across the creek, I do not know what they eat, what is their religion, do they pay their bills on time? or even: Are they more important than I am?

What can I see about them when never knowing their faces?

Little birdie little birdie
Come and sing me your song
You’ve a short time to be here
and a long time to be gone.

traditional bluegrass song

What can I know about them while never noing myself? It seems someone ridings bicycle while wearing a minimum bathing suit or maybe just his white underwear —maybe you wold call it a “loin cloth.?”

People may have their own little place, “In My Room” which we only see from the back.

I like the view of the window, we just see the top part, it gives the house a special feel .

Many images of Krishna are probably from different stories, maybe it does not matter what the traditional written story is about, the visual image has its own story to tell. You may have noticed when seeing color publications printed in India they have is a unique sense of color. So did societies all around the world until printing came around, along with an ever increasing demand for multiple copies of the same image.

See how intently Krishna is focused, I assume its Rukmini or Radha —maybe they are one and the same—holding the little cow on the leash as it is licked clean by its mother.

Commercial four color offset printing has done much to standardize the global color palate. The process of offset printing itself, where a pressman sets up the press to print run to a standard and works to maintain that standard for the whole run—The goal is each print looks the same and the skilled pressman constantly adjusts the press, which changes how it prints as it works , back to the“standard.”
In digital printing the code for printing a color is the same code in the software in all computers but when printed to any specific monitor the screen calibration is a unique quality of every computer. Your logo does not look, and perhaps not feel, the same from one computer screen to another but no one really knows as they are all too busy looking at their own screens.

Looking forward while standing in line at TJ’s.

The Buddha said,“Subhuti, if someone should claim, ‘The Tathagata teaches a dharma ’ such a claim would be untrue. Such a view of me, Subhuti, would be a misconception. And how so? In the teaching of a dharma, Subhuti, in the ‘teaching of a dharma’ there is no such dharma to be found as the ‘teaching of a dharma.
The Diamond Sutra translation by Red Pine’

or look to the side, just don’t look back.

A Zen had-by

If I don’t do Zen meditation to wipe out deluded thoughts then I must pace around drunkenly, spouting crazy songs. Otherwise in the autumn moon, evenings of springtime breeze,  how to cope with these idle yearnings for the past?
Po Chü-i   •  772-846  •  Burton Watson translation

The last, the first

In Finnegans Wake (auth: James Joyce), the beginning sentence is the last part of the ending sentence. I made this as a t-shirt design, a few people,  bought it online, but they were all from foreign countries, I cannot imagine how this book could be translated into another language— in this sense it is a “pre-print oral communication” book— Joyce motivates you  to read it aloud to yourself and then it makes sense. 

But then again many that do read it spend their time trying to figure out what is about. It provides people with something to do in their life while it requires an interesting commitment  as an entrance fee.

Could you say this about the book?

“Literature should be written to serve one’s own generation, and poems and songs to influence public affairs.”
Po Chü-i

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Jindaiji is famous for soba and a New Year’s Daruma festival. In Tokyo temples and shrines are distributed throughout the city and people physically interact with them every day—for some “cutting through the temple grounds” is little more than a shortcut to work or school, and “as long as I am here maybe a small bow for good luck anyway,” —its a personal experience integrated  with a common experience of tradition.

Its not like a church where most people walk by everyday and  are “socially required” to attend as a group one morning once  a week at a specific time; or one day; or one evening; etc. a group experience of togetherness? or submission?

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Bizen and Mashiko are two old folk kilns in Japan, “kiln” can refer to an area where there is a tradition of  potters who live, dig the same clay, use similar techniques and create a common class of pottery. Bizen and Mashiko are different kilns and at the same time, individual Bizen or Mashiko potters  have their own personal kilns.

We might say “they have a style,” but its more than a style because ofduration —a relationship between the artist and people who appreciate their work.

Nakamura Kazuki (Bizen) is the grandson of Nakamara Rokuro and Hamada Tomoo (Mashiko) is the grandson of Hamada Shoji—both are grandsons of famous potters.

 

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Pottery is most useful if it can contain liquid. A ki-seto tokkuri and guinomi;  Father and son; Kagame Shugai and Kagame Masakane.

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Peeping through the window of a back alley, then through a second  window, across Central  Avenue  SE to the buildings of the university,

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No matter how many barriers there always seems to be people who will seek them out . .   some will cross them, while others will cross them while not ever seeking them . .  and others will use them for their person benefit. Each of us need a little bit of each, but not too much.

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Waiting for Godough . . . Can you not help yourself when you see, a door, or an image of a door, and not wonder what is behind it? When I was young there was a song chorus:

Midnight, one more night without sleeping,
Watching till the morning comes creeping.
Green door, what’s that secret you’re keeping?
Songwriters: Bob Davie / Marvin Moore

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Walking around Russian Hill one afternoon I saw this mother standing in front of her  house with her bundles, waiting, as it turned out,  for her son  . . . I watched her waiting for about 30 minutes, impatiently fidgeting until he showed up in a big black expensive car, and,  talking on his phone.

He parked in the middle of the street,—its on a hill— blocking traffic, got out, walked around to back, opened the trunk, put the stuff in, closed the trunk, escorted mom around to the passenger  side of the car, put her inside, came back around to get in the driver’s seat and drove off—All the while talking business on his handheld phone. 

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Umbrellas at Yasukuni, it was raining, there was a  group photo shoot  under a big gate and umbrellas, unwanted in the photograph, and unneeded under the gate, were standing against a pillar.

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One day in 1970, these people met, spent the night in an A-frame in Vermont and then moved on. Second from left is “Turtle” of Turtle Trucking in Boston, and the couple on his right . . .

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We had met them in Boston, they were from Texas and driving around for the summer and they joined us for a few days; I did not know any of the other people and I never saw them again. Turtle I saw a few years later when I returned to Boston to attend design  school. I returned with no money, my van and a dog, and I worked some day jobs for Turtle who paid me daily until I got a nite job driving a cab while attending art school,  and a really cheap room plus sharing an apartment with two strangers.

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Bisa and I came out of the woods into a field, it had snowed most of the night,  by morning it had stopped when we started out, still it was so overcast that I could not  locate the sun even though I had a good estimate of the time. After about 30 minutes it started snowing again and within 20 minutes our trailing tracks were  being covered.

I knew there was a large pond south east and that I was on the downward slope but the pond was about two  miles away and it was only woods the whole way, with direct east being about 100 miles of trees. And then I came on to this barn, long abandoned but still a road was findable in the snow.

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With a single “I,”  “U” can make a wish.

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Late January afternoon in Leverett,  MA

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China Town, San Francisco,

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I like to think I made more mistakes in my life than you did, but probably I didn’t, It was not the  makin’ of  mistakes that was my problem,  it was just not being able to fix my mistakes or maybe I make mistakes beyond my abiilty, or my desire, to fix—maybe they are the same thing.

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Found in transmisalation

Walking back from Kappabashi Street to Asakusa  I met this wall and then two young photographers wandered in . . . Does this image tell you about them, about me or about how you see?

Any years ago I watched a short documentary film of A.Wyeth in which he discussed  his painting of the Kuerners, the one where he is holding the rifle, and they are standing in front of the white wall.  Wyeth discusses  his concern with the white wall and how  he redid it multiple times until was right.

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Light is what a photograph is, but so is Lens.

Lens is how about your personal feelings with the content of the image.

I am an adjustable kind of person so I have a zoom lens. Actually I am old, its easier to carry around one lens than multiple cameras.

I do not know anything about these two people, just two photographers on a street in Tokyo between Asakusa and Kappabashi Street.  I was admiring the reflections on the wall and they were admiring other things,

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For me, the highest Art level of photography is photojournalism. For people photographs aways are about reality, no matter how abstract is a photograph people unconsciously   ask “ But what is it?” They need to have that answered before they can visually experience line, texture, shape, color, etc. My sister and I on our way to learn our  mother  had a stroke, lost her memory  and was never to know who we were again.

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Second is the is snapshot, people love to take photographs  and snapshots are about the experience of taking the photograph or being photographed,  and not the photograph itself.

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There is always the “realisim” of a photograph—is it evidence incur or insurance claims, proof of infidelity or a family history of a great grand parent.

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Photograph is using light to Mae an image, The visual experience  is in the interaction between  the light and the eye , but the human experience is between the eye and the  human mental process,  and these are different.

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The eye is happy with line, shape, color,texture but the human mental process  is not satisfied  with  those things,  it wants words, categories  to classifiy the experience and that is what “understanding“ means a photograph means to people.

But it was not always this  way,  this is what McCluhan is writing about how print so radically changed  the meaning being human.

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Japan is both so modern and yet so many of the modern  inventions do not quite fit into the Japanese world bandits fine that they stay outside, its alright to keep the invaders out.

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The old shows its age and new just walks by . . .

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Japanese may not care about the meaning, the color, the experience of the the shape, the color, the line is enough. Who nos where the shadow goes?

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Sometimes you do not need to speak the language ,just drinking sake and eating edamame with people you meet passing through  Ueno is enough.

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