Subtle - jwardenphotography

Two humpback whales swim side by side. Light traces a line down the back of one, highlighting texture, scars and marks, the experiences of life in the oceans. The misty breath off a third whale, unseen, drifts through a moment that is natural, elegant and serene. Lines and tones traced upon a living canvas, suggesting, rather than revealing.

In Japan, where as a culture, they are perhaps more attuned to the aesthetics of nature, they use the word yugen, a word which means to avoid the obvious and relates to the subtleties of nature. Yugen is about shadows and indistinct, even darkly revealed forms. Yugen is the suggestion that there are extra layers of meaning which are not obvious at first glance.

The art of the subtle requires of us a long and slow contemplation from which inner thoughts and feelings give rise to a heightened awareness.

Take your time to explore the gallery below. An understanding of yugen, the subtle, is an important step on our vision quest.

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