From One Element into Another

This random shot was taken while walking the beach one afternoon. Isn’t it interesting how we flock to the land’s border with the sea and stare out? Maybe that is a metaphor for crossing from one element into another. Although we don’t think of it that way when we come here to relax.

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From One Element into Another
From One Element into Another – we sit on a pier by the water

I will hang around the piers because they are magnets for all kinds of compositions. Generally they form a leading line, but in cases like this they form a border; in other cases they bisect the image. People do all manner of things on piers. They fish, they stand or sit and look out, they have picnics and they take pictures. Large seabirds use the piers to as a platform for fishing or stealing from fishermen.

A pier extends the land and allows us to walk over a domain that is not our native habitat. Think of the effort in construction required just to do that small feat. To build this pier took nearly a year of effort and untold costs just to make it strong enough to withstand a different element. Piers are extensions of land and we expend huge efforts in making them.

Another type of extension is a bridge; it projects one element (earth) over another (water). But also I am reminded of grand viewing platforms like the one at the Grand Canyon that is also like a pier but into the air element rather than water. Then there are canals that project the water element over the land. Whenever we decide to project one element into another, the effort is huge. Isn’t it interesting that traversing across natural elements requires so much effort?

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So perhaps when we come to the ocean and look out, at some level it captures our imagination. I think it is slightly ironic that we are use our minds to project ourselves much more easily into that foreign element than can ever be done with mere brick and mortar.

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