Monthly Archives: October 2013

Infinity Week Pt.3

So this exercise of thinking about infinity, and by association thinking about repetition, has been creatively interesting, but filled with failure. I’ve tried to capture things which strike me as they repeat. Mostly, these have been pretty mundane examples of repeating structures. The folding pipes row on row of the radiator, or the doors between cars on the train; imaging these repetitious things which trick our minds into believing that there is a forever. Perhaps that is a glum view, and I should amend myself and say that we are fooled into believing we can glimpse eternity. Whatever your perspective on that weighty thought, it remains that I have been largely unsuccessful in my attempts.

Radiator interior

I am every inch an amateur, with no skills or credentials. I’m just a guy who likes to stop and take pictures sometimes, and I have fun playing with them in Instagram.  I know that I am taking liberties, using the internet and these democratising tools to participate in things, so I don’t know what some people think about that. I think that means I should expect to fail. At just about everything I try to do with a camera, I should expect there to be failures, especially if there’s an artistic thought in my head about it. Failure is a good thing though, because then you know what does not work, what is not right, even though you may not know why it’s not right. And besides, I’m still having fun, so, it’s okay.

. . . maybe when the roof is finished, this will work. . .

Sometimes, failing when you’re trying to do one thing lets you find something else. I’ve been in kind of a weird headspace all day, because I’m trying to get ready to start working night shifts and I had to be up all day. Now I’m writing to stay up all night (yeah, good luck with that!) I took the train into Oakville this morning, and I took a few pictures on the way there. I had really hoped to find something better on the train. I have some romantic notions around trains and science, the influence train travel had on Einstein, representing these strange truths of our apparently infinite cosmos. In particular, I had hoped I could line up a shot of the passage between train cars as I rode. As you can see, it didn’t really work out. Too much movement between the cars, and the stepped design just interfered with the shot. All I really accomplished was an impression of what I was going for, and to look like a weirdo to the lady next to the door. *Self High-Five*

Rivets on the train

Nope, not quite

 

On the way back to Toronto from my mom’s house, I took notice of the line of cars coming at us along the 401. This part of the highway is the busiest in North America, and one of the widest and busiest highways in the world. Despite all this, those of you who have used it regularly know that this highway is probably not sufficiently meeting its usage demands. We weren’t at the widest and busiest sections yet, but the constant stream of headlights made for the best repeating pattern I had seen all day. I guess I could say I was looking for some sort of deeper social commentary about the car society, dependence on fossil fuels, failure of infrastructure, but honestly I just wanted to be able to look at that image for a few minutes without it changing, just to see what I thought of it. With my cellphone camera, there was way too much glare to get a good shot of the separate lights, their flares blending into one worm of light along the way. The reflective yellow line looks really cool to me, and I think I got a good sense of motion in the shot. You can tell I had my phone out the window, and I was stretching across my brother’s turkey leftovers as I took the shot, so while I might have wanted to it again, I was already paranoid about dropping my phone on the road. It wasn’t what I was hoping for, but I think it’s kind of neat anyway.

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Infinity Week Part 2

So thinking about the infinite has been an interesting activity for me. It’s definitely true that none of us human beings can really conceptualize the enormity of something that’s infinite, so I’ve been left wondering what exactly we mean when we represent something infinite. I’ve concluded that what we tend to mean is something that’s repeated in a seemingly endless loop. In the classic “Infinity Shot”, two mirrors are used to created just this sort of repetition.

As I did here with my $2 art from Nuit Blanche in Toronto, twine, and a paper clip.

 

Interestingly enough, while simple repetition seems to lure us with an easy representation of the infinite, there’s some pretty interesting math which suggests this isn’t entirely wrong. When you consider fractal geometry, at its core is a series of repeating patterns, where the whole can be found in any given part.

I know it’s not fractal, but that’s what I was thinking about when I was shooting this pattern of leaves.

I don’t even need to pretend to be smart enough to understand fractal math (I’m not) to find another example of the relationship between infinity and repetition. Repeating, non-terminating decimals are encountered much more frequently than Non-repeating decimals. It may be true that things which run long enough, inevitably repeat (although how much more interesting are numbers like Pi for that then?)

Anyway, enough pretending I know about math. Here are a few more pictures I took today while thinking about repetition and infinity.

I was hoping to find the sort of equi-distant, planned forest arrangement you often see along the side of the road, but these three trees were the most aligned, most similar I found.

All these trees seemed very similar to me, though I don’t think I captured anything that really represents repetition or infinity here. I like the image though.

Millions of iterations, countless in their forest population. Still, just pine needles.

 

 

 

 

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Infinity Week

I came upon this blog post today from The Daily Post At WordPress.com. Ben Huberman’s got some very cool thoughts about repeating patterns.

For my last job, I had to leave the house at 5:20 in the morning, which meant that I was up before everyone I know. I would take the subway out to the western-most stop in Toronto, Kipling Station. When I was there, I’d snap a picture with Instagram and write a quick note about the weather. It was a fun way to keep in touch with people, and it gave me an interesting chance to experiment with repetition. I haven’t been using my camera as much of late, probably because I’ve been tied to the computer with writing and editing work. But I’m really interested in taking up this as my mission for the week; to capture as many sweet infinity shots as I can. I’ll be sure to update here, but you can catch it live by following me on instagram here or on Twitter @MohrMohr7.

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Where I’ve been. . .

Cover art by Tom Chounpanh. Click the image for the link

So I haven’t written a post here in about a week or so, which really is a lapse on my part. But I assure you I have good reason for it! I am very proud to announce that I have released my first novel, Stormfront on Amazon.com and worldwide. This has been a long time coming, and I’m very proud of my work so far.

Stormfront is a story of conflict, ancient enemies, and loss. The first in a series of epic adventures, it is my hope that you’ll want to see how things play out for these characters who have become so dear to me. And while I do not promise you happy endings, there will be satisfaction.

I’d like to thank all my friends and family for their support. I’ve made this project a priority for me (I hope that’s reflected in the quality) and I know that’s not always been easy for other people to wrap their heads around. But here’s to the great adventure, trying new things, and taking chance. You can find Stormfont on Amazon.com, or just click here.

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