In animistic and other spiritual traditions, there is a concept that all elements of the world around us have an inner life or consciousness. This consciousness is not readily accessible to humans. For example, in ancient Greek mythology, forest nymphs (called dryads) were considered to be very shy creatures. In our increasingly urbanized world, we are drawn to bits of nature, no matter how modest, in part because of our longing for spiritual connection. In these photographs, I offer a fleeting glimpse of otherwise unseen and silent presences that inhabit our world.
I made these images in the 1970s while living in the rural Midwest (Iowa and Wisconsin). They reflect a formative period in my early photographic development, as well as a somewhat nostalgic window into an earlier era. During that (pre-digital) time, my photographic approach was necessarily deliberative, since I was using a manual medium format film camera.