A History of Staring at Ceilings

For my entire life reaching as far back as I can remember, which varies at times in range, from perhaps the age of three or four and up, and occasionally even earlier, to those times before the acquisition of language, before the capacity to name.

I have distinct and specific memories of lying on the couch, or a bed for one reason or another: perhaps having been told to take a nap, or as an adult choosing to take a break, perhaps feeling depressed or sick, and other times savoring the beauty, the simple beauty of light as it fell through the window, or from a light on the ceiling, as it met the corner of the room, and sometimes the window.

These moments have always and still do contain an entire universe of possible emotions, a sense of deep connection to all that is; this deep feeling of potential, and at the same time a deep anxiety at the possibility of missed potential, missed opportunity.

I realize I still have that same exact set of feelings now.

The feelings vary; sometimes anxiety, sometimes joy, sometimes anticipation, the full range of human emotions.

My work arises from a desire to understand the ongoing stream of felt experiences along the full emotional continuum. This occurs via direct experiential processing, an ongoing , intuitive development of a visual photographic vocabulary.

This lexicon seeks to make visible the invisible: what do we see and how does it impact us and how are we in relationship to it?

It confronts the fundamental reality of suffering; our confusions about connection and disconnection.

My work seeks meet our experiences of suffering with an authentic wrestling with the right kind of problems; that is, those which ask questions, the asking of which and the attempts at answering have deep and consequential meaning that continue to generate profound meaning in our lives.

The work seeks to alleviate existential suffering by offering moments of contemplation of beauty and connection even in some of the most unusual places.

It’s seeks to help us turn and face our fears rather than run from them. The images arrive from a desire to find places of connection rather than being caught and confused by apparent separations encountered in every day reality.

Relationship to and Experience of Urban Landscape

Art Helps Us Face the Inevitable 

Wouldn’t it be nice to learn how connecting with art can help us face the inevitable? It can! 

One of the ways is by helping us remember what is most important to us, remembering those things that we love, those ephemeral moments of beauty which sustain us on a day-to-day basis.

Join us for a fun, engaging couple of hours at the world’s best museum, The Art Institute of Chicago!  

Space is very limited to make the most of your experience so giddy up and get your tickets now. 

#arteducation #fineart #artremembers #everythingchanges #ephemeralart #chicago #chicagoart #artinstituteofchicago #artastherapy #ArtInChicago #alaindebotton #hillaryjohnsonphotographer #HillaryJohnsonDocumentaryPhotographer #hillyshoots

Art for Introverts Success

Art for Introverts was a wonderful success! 

We came, we saw the art, together we made sense of it all and left with new insights and one specific actionable thing to do to make more space in our lives for peace and the delights of art to get in. 

Thanks to everyone who came. 

What people had to say:

  • Seeing a piece of art can correct things in the mind. Things being emotional and interpretations of life.
  • I was drawn to very contemplative pieces, reminding me I need to take more time for myself. 
  • I’m going to take five minutes every morning to sit in silence before I start my routine.
  • Before class, I was hoping for insights to enable me to have a greater appreciation of art. I learned that doing exactly this-stopping and actually making and taking the time to immerse myself in the world of art, but the very act of appreciation is brought about.
  • Looking at that moon jar with as many facets reminded me that life is like that too, made of many facets, so I’m sad, some happy and that a good life is made of all of those things.
  • Definitely I was able to look at art for the first time and pick out the feeling it spoke to in me, rather than just liking how it looked. I’m going to go outside and sit and watch the scenery this week intentionally, to relax and take it all in.
  • This was so wonderful. It was like taking a little mini vacation right here in my home city. I definitely would do more of these. The combination of the art, the people in our group and the way you taught was amazing. A real get-a-way!

Schedule for new events coming soon.

Song of the Lark

Once voted one of the most popular pieces of art in the world, “The Song of the Lark,” by Jules-Adolph Breton, 1884, this image of a young woman standing in the field, may evoke an array of different emotions perhaps even confusion. 

What a way to make of her? 

Is she sad and resigned or quietly hopeful? 

What can she offer us for our own struggles at the beginning of each day? 

Join us next Saturday to explore the many possibilities and to experience for yourself the many consolations that art may offer us in a complicated world today. 

Come solo or with a friend. It’s going to be a lot of fun but space is very limited, so grab yours now. 
See you at the museum!