In 2013 I was taking part in The Teleidoscope, a group on Flickr which challenged photographers to take a themed image every week for a year. Three years ago today, I created “Waldeinsamkeit” as my submission for the theme of that week: Enchanted Forest. I’m no stranger to trying my hand at daft, bizarre or lengthy photographs, but this image is definitely up there with the crazier ones!
Waldeinsamkeit is a German word, which describes the feeling of being alone in the woods. I don’t recall exactly where I discovered the word (I recollect that it may have been whilst browsing a blog), but I remember thinking that I needed to use the word in some kind of image (it’s such an appealing word!).
I’m not sure what possessed me to create a scanograph. I definitely don’t know why I thought that stitching 16 different scanographs together (!) to create my final image was the route to go down… But I did.
I remember feeling disappointed at the time that it wasn’t as well-received as I’d hoped. I spent a longtime ferreting around in my mum’s garden; I collected pine needles, soil, twigs, moss, grass, pine cones, leaves and a stray feather. Then I spread all of my newly-found treasure on the scanner (!) alongside fistfuls of glitter, and began the slow process of scanning different parts of my body to look as though I was emerging from the forest floor. After all of that, I probably took double that time simply editing the scanographs together to create the final, rather large (over 890MB!) image.
It’s still not an image particularly loved in my Flickr stream. It boasts a lowly 612 views at present, just 1 favourite (boohoo!) and 9 comments.
I’m okay with this now. I accepted a while back, that just because I pour my heart and emotions into a project, creative or otherwise, doesn’t mean that other people will see what I see. Or feel what I feel. Or even be able to place any value in it what-so-ever. It’s easy to describe this in terms of creative endeavors; most people don’t appreciate the same art or artists, regardless of the time and effort put into creating a work of art. It’s even less easy to value something that you are unable to witness (say, a knitter spending 5 hours knitting, only to unravel their work because what they ended up knitting wasn’t what they were aiming for).
Anyway. It’s good to knit for no reason. Or spend a ridiculous amount of time on a project that is important to you, you and only you. Producing something that makes you feel good is always something to be proud of, and it’s a bonus if it makes other people feel good, too.
Happy Tuesday, friends!