My Creative Process--How The "Nature's Design Reimagined" Portfolio Came To Be

I am a survivor of three different cancers, including Stage 4 lung cancer with a 5 year survival rate of 1%, according to Mayo clinic. It has been 8 years since my right lung was removed, and today, I am considered medically cured and cancer free. My doctors tell me I look closer to 50 than 73, and there is no way one can look at me and have any idea as to what I've been through.  I am 73 years old and live in Ponte Beach, in north Florida.

 My fascination with photography and the creative process, by whatever artistic means expressed, began when I received my first camera at age 13, set up my first darkroom, and watched the first image appear,as if by magic. That began a life-long journey of creative exploration to find and create beauty from where it seemingly did not exist.

I am often amazed at how we can all go through periods in our lives that may seem so difficult, or even devastating or hopeless, only to find that, if we can "gut" our way through it, we can emerge on the "other side" , actually better,  and in ways we might not have imagined.

Last year I developed a bad case of pneumonia. It left me weakened and debilitated for four months. But I gained from that experience  an opportunity to become more meditative and introspective and to learn to  see the world around me in an entirely different way. 

Early every morning I would sit out by the lake behind my house and become attuned to my surroundings...fish jumping from the lake, eagles and other birds flying overhead and often settling, momentarily, in the trees around me. I bought a pair of high-powered binoculars with image stabilization, so I could study those things in greater detail...and  I was blown away! 

The binoculars restricted my field of view and forced me to focus intensely on  a small area.

It was like looking at a whole new world, and I began concentrating on the trees...seeking out small elements of natural design, textures and colors. And my mind began visualizing so much more than what my eyes perceived. I found a way to attach my camera and iPhone to the binoculars and a spotting scope used in "birding", and I let my intuition take over and began taking pictures.

I then used Photoshop and various other creative tools to take these often mundane images, and create a different reality through digital manipulation...involving multiple levels of varying complexity to reach a final result.

The following are three of the original unretouched files--

                                         

Utilizing numerous techniques...stretching, distorting, skewing, rotating, color adjustment, cutting, cropping, duplicating, flipping, masking, etc. to the original images...resulted in the following final work--

                                               

                 Mother Earth                           When Angels Pray                      Angel Ascending