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Saturday, April 12, 2008

A Magic Eye

Children see magical things in the ordinary, but it's uncommon for adults to be so bewitched by the mundane. Sandi Greene is a grown-up with childlike vision and her skill with a camera enables her to capture on film or digitally what she sees. She transforms withered plants, well past their season, into fairy rings and storybook characters, such as the Big Bad Wolf in drag, scurrying through the woods after Red Riding Hood. Every page is a wondrous trigger to the imagination.

Sandi's book, Seeing Evangeline. is a visual meditation that slows you down to search the images for faces, figures, graceful limbs and flowing gowns. Each figure or group has a name, the clue to finding the image. Accompanying the name is the botanical name of the plant and where she found it: a park, a friend's garden and public gardens, mostly in Canada.

Sandi attended my creativity workshop in Calgary, where I first saw her wonderful book. She tells me she did not Photoshop her images, except to enhance contrast where needed. Sandi also says that she is surprised by what people see in her photographs, other than what she herself sees. A brief text at the beginning explains how her journey into this magic kingdom of plants began and where it has taken her. End pages include line drawings of the figures she sees, along with common names of the plants.

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