Twists and turns in the art sector. Like taking a panoramic photo – you expect it to go from A to B, left to right, past to present

Twists and turns in the art sector. Like taking a panoramic photo – you expect it to go from A to B, left to right, past to present, present to future. Sometimes life is like that, which provides a sense of stability, calm and knowingness. Then something happens unexpectedly. And things cannot be seen in the same way ever again. You may find it frightening, disturbing – or exciting and exhilarating. What is a sure thing is that old adage, “the only thing that’s constant in life is that it changes all the time” (Oscar Wilde I believe).


In the UK we use metaphors to describe how that feels, such as “it turned my world upside down”. As in this photo I took this morning, which inspired this post. Several thoughts and actions were processed in the action of taking the photo:

  • Thought: wonderful morning, I’ll take a photo
  • Thought: a panoramic would capture it but I have done that so many times before it’s getting boring
  • Reflection: I did explore corrupting the iPhone camera a while ago, forcing it into doing something unexpected. Could do that
  • Thought: today is Monday, the day I have decided to spend on reflective thinking, therefore I must act on that thought, because thinking is only useful if I act upon it
  • Action: begin taking photo, get half way along the chosen ‘scene’ then flip, make it go the other way and retrace it’s steps
  • Outcome: the river is rotated visually, turns back on itself AND appears as  a mirror, albeit a flipped mirror
  • Thought: that’s what I need to do today – stand back, look at the view, flip it around, rethink it, reconstruct it in different ways, shift my thinking and see things anew
  • Action: share the photo on Facebook, because it is important to me and may be useful to others
  • Reflection: the twisted panoramic is how my work is – moving in one direction then reflecting back then moving forward again.
  • Life is like that too.

For a long time I sought a method of looking at something in a new way. Artists turn paintings upside down, or look at them in a mirror. Writers stash writing away then surprise themselves one day by reading it anew. Seeing ourselves in a mirror has the same effect. Selfies have hit the news this week – interesting – at a time when the whole country is attempting to reconstruct and reinvent itself. As the social infrastructure is slashed and burnt, we return to what we know best, ourselves and the places we relate to. The cancer awareness campaign, started not by the charity but by the public, has raised over £2 million pounds for cancer research.

Twists and turns are helpful. They keep the water flowing, stop it from becoming stagnant. They generate energy and momentum.

So is calm, when you can see yourself as in a mirror – reflection is imperative.

So now I’m off to do that myself – sunny days are always a good time to think. Intrigued to see what I find.

Published by carolyn black

I'm an artist and also commission contemporary art in unusual locations. As a producer, I fundraise, curate, project manage and deliver projects. I'm also a writer and film-maker.

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