Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Late afternoon light highlights the Shoalhaven horizon

Late afternoon light on the far horizon created an unusual perspective of my ever-changing view.

I just happened to glance at the clouds late in the afternoon, at 4:55pm, which ought have been just a few minutes after official sunset. What I had first noticed was that while the entire sky appeared covered by dull grey clouds, the very far horizon had a pink line - a break of clouds - which effectively highlighted the far side of the Shoalhaven valley (near Sassafras, Tianjara Falls, and the Budawangs). I wrote about that view of the horizon recently.
The eye sees things differently from the camera, and we can "focus" the mind as well as the eye, to block out everything except that which we wish to see. The equivalent is to zoom the long lens in, and close off the foreground. This is what I was really looking at.

But, what I mean about the role of the mind in perception is this: I ask you to look only at the far horizon. Forget the trees, forget the deep valley - just look at the pink line of sky, and the hills immediately below. That was what I saw this afternoon. Of course, this works best if you click on the image below (to blow it up).
To capture the perspective about which I am writing (as a photographic image), I would need a lens a metre long, or more. Sorry folks, I cannot afford that. But your eyes can approximate what I was looking at, by just focussing on just the very horizon itself - for a second or two. See what your mind can do? The small hills start to stand out from the seemingly flat horizon. Gaps appear between individual hills.

Our eyes are really amazing organs - at least when used in conjunction with an active mind. It is "Perception" I am talking about, NOT just "Vision". This is a similar discussion to the comments I made recently when talking about the clouds seen in the main street of Robertson.

I am tempted to quote the old proverb: "There are none so blind as those who will not see"...
  • "There are none so blind as those who will not see. The most deluded people are those who choose to ignore what they already know. The proverb has been traced back in English to 1546 (John Heywood), ...... . In 1738, it was used by Jonathan Swift in his 'Polite Conversation,' and is first attested in the United States in the 1713 'Works of Thomas Chalkley'..."

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