In this collection of black and white nature art prints, I have chosen tree bark as the theme. I did not just photograph any bark from any tree. That would have been much too easy. The associated symbolism would have had little interest.
Rather, I chose to capture photos from the Fremont Cottonwood trees at Capitol Reef in the state of Utah. These very old trees were planted in 1880. Their bark is rough and hardened with the decades of time passed.
Symbolically, the bark represents protection because it shelters the tree from bad weather and from external attacks.
It also represents regeneration. When a piece of bark disappears, it is like an injury to the tree. Nevertheless, the tree will heal and rebuild itself.
The bark is also the material on which some may engrave messages or symbols. These people are certain that their memos will last through time. When they return 20 or 30 years after the inscriptions are engraved, they will find them and remember. The bark is in some cases a bank or storehouse of personal memories.
I often compare these gnarled and tortured barks to the wrinkles of the elderly. Like the wrinkles carved by time into the skin, the bark symbolizes experience, knowledge, and years that have inevitably passed into history.
The intertwined and sinuous lines of these barks of old trees are the wrinkles of time. The older the tree, the more marked these wrinkles. When I caress them or touch them with my fingertips, I always feel like the tree is sustaining me with vital energy. I feel like he is trying to tell me something which he saw in the past, or something about myself which is unknown to me. I have always found that interacting with trees, especially with the oldest among them, has a concrete impact on my life.
I hope that these black and white fine art prints will also make you feel this ancient energy resonating from the trees.
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