Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Variable Angle Reflections

I've so many magical things for you today. Really. Little magical tricks. And yes, that illustration up therethe one that turns the world on its sideis one of them. But you're going to want to see all the magic here today. I promise.

My son penciled this sketch in response to a school project, and not the one for his Art class. The assignment was for Algebra. The directive: pick an Algebraic term (like axis, ordered pair, coordinate, slope, horizontal, etc.) and make a creative illustration of its meaning. The goal being to relate the term to something other than its mathematical meaning, while still accurately illustrating its meaning.

Had I been handed the criteria, I would have scratched my head for a long time. And then I would have drawn a tree. Or maybe a ladder. I'd probably forget to draw a straight line for grounding. And so my primitive art work wouldn't demonstrate a relation would it? It wouldn't show its horizontal axis of reflection. In other words, it wouldn't have perspective.

It would be much easier for me to just define certain angles, or use them metaphorically, as I did here (relative to age, ugh), because that's my comfort zone. I don't know if it's just meand if you've been reading me you're aware of my mathematical limitationsor if its the fact that as we age we become a bit more set in our ways. Or maybe it's just that we like to stay in our comfort zones. We like the speed limit. We know what to expect.

But Max, he knew exactly what to do. Why did he know exactly what to do? Is it because he's still too young to drive, and therefore doesn't understand the concept of speed limit? Well, it's several reasons I suppose, but I think the main reason is that he's able to look at things from various angles and perspectives. And maybe that is because, at thirteen, he can't yet get his license.

So, what is magical about the illustration is that it reminds me that sometimes one has to turn a thing on its head, or its side, to really understand its meaning. It reminds me that tunnel vision is limiting. It reminds me to seek perspective through unobstructed peripheral vision. (Otherwise, I really should get off the road.) It reminds me to not take a thing for granted. To not jump to conclusions without first exploring all sides. Sometimes I need pixie dust thrown in my face for this to happen. That's what my son's illustration is. It is pixie dust. It is magic.

Hang on, more magic, the best is yet to come...
 Sourced from internet

All right, the next bit of magic involves more lines, and arcs, too, and is especially for my writerly friends. BUT (big but) it is magic for ALL. It's something I read long ago, and something my friend Maria reminded me of not so long ago. Maria, by the way, is also magic. Really. She knows how to fling pixie dust. (And I'm so looking forward to getting me some of her dust this weekend!) So if you've any desire for a dusting, go see her.

Alright, are you ready? This is really exciting... pure magic... Wait. I'll give you a hint. It has to do with this guy:
 Photo via www

Ok, here's that other bit of magic I promised you: Hocus Pocus. Don't be shy, go ahead, click on Hocus Pocus! And don't come back until you've been thoroughly doused with that silky, glistening dust, until you're entire body is sparkling.

Ah! You're back! Wasn't that awesome?!  Look how sparkly you are. Is that man not genious? Magic?

Now are you ready for the best yet to come? Voila, for my last trick, the final bit of magic:
 Sourced from internet

You think I'm kidding don't you? Yes, it's a mirror. Look at it. Look into it. What do you see? Oh, you see yourself? YES! Correct! It is you. You, my friends, are the magic. You, over there on the right side of my pagemy Google Friends, Facebook friends, Open Salon friends, Networked Blogs friendsand You, other friends who don't like to put your picture up on walls, but still stop by for a visit on occasion, and drop comments in the box (or maybe you don't, and that's fine, too). You, on the Blogs I Follow and My Favorites list. You, who may not be on any list, You are what keeps me coming back here, and what keeps me looking out there, to YouYou didn't realize that you had pixie dust stashed in your back pocket, now did you? Well, you do.

Yup, Youthe best of the magic, my friendsyou who have such vision. You're perspective is important. You, we, who love to share perspectives, ideas, writing, comments, photographs, our soul, with the World. The whole World. How exciting is that? It kind of takes some guts, don't you think? I'm not necessarily known for guts, but You help. (Not to mention the internet which is also magic.) We read each other, we learn from each other, we become friends. Even if it's only in cyberspace, we still become friends.

And You and Iwe know the magic of sharing. Thank goodness it's the one thing (hopefully, not the only thing) that we didn't lose when we stumbled, oh-so-gracefully, into that darker world of adulthood. We may have lost our innocence, we may have lost some perspective (but you know magic can bring it back), but we sure as heck still know how to share. We learned of its importance as a child, and we still know it to be true, effective and empowering. We know we need to share to make it all work nicely. We know that sharing can change the World. Just look at what happened in Egypt! (Not that I'm proposing a revolution, but you know what I mean.)

So keep sharing your perspective everyone. I love hearing from you, I love reading you. I love sharing you. (Hope you don't mind.) I love all of your angles and reflections. I'm so happy you share. It's nothing short of magic.

1. I got so busy going to all the magical places you sent me, that I almost forgot to come back here and leave a comment- not to you, sorry. To your son. Sir, I think you are a genius.

2. Whew had me worried starting with math, I really dislike math and it feels the same about me. But standing on my head to see something from another vantage point, AH I get it :)

A very magical post!
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

3. I find that magic also when I look through a camera lens, finding different perspectives that illuminate life in many ways. The lens is almost like a prism, casting light on so many areas.

Hm, now I've got an ELO song in my head ... Strange Magic :)

4. I agree with Nessa, your son is a genius....and a great ending to the post....it made me feel special, made me feel nice and smiling....I just love having all of you as friends...*hugs*

5. Nessa- ya, I think he's pretty genius, too. Glad you took a trip on the magical carpet ride! ;)

Jules- Fear not, I have trouble with anything beyond algebra. And I have trouble with that, too, so I won't ever take you too far down that road. :)

Joanne- Your posts always inspire me, they tend to challenge perspective, and got me thinking... the lens is indeed a prism.
Oh, I should have asked for your consult on a playlist on this post!

Cat- Ditto. Ditto!

6. I'm actually re-teaching myself certain mathematical ideas in the hope of mastering a few tricks and love the idea of the picture...well observed/
Oh and you are so lovely in being so inclusive of all who comment. I may be a newbie here but I adore your attitude to all who enter.
You go girl!

7. This is so smart, funny, whimsical, and gracious. Lady, you've got it all goin' on!

8. I agree with Nessa and Caterpillar - your soon is a genius! I'm not good at math, I never liked it math never liked me.
Thank you for making me feel so special, really nice of you for the kind words you wrote in the end.

9. nice picture.

i have to go take a leak.

10. Dan- Mastering a few tricks, eh? So we'll soon be seeing some magic from you? And thank you - I'm happy you know you are most welcome here. ;)

Seré- Oh no, no, dear. YOU have got it all going on. But thank you. ;)

Starlight- Any time!

BP- Haha! I know, I bit of a long read w/all those side trips, huh? Thanks for hanging in there! ;)

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12. I'm horrible with images. My thoughts are almost entirely verbal so I'm always in awe of someone that can create an image, let alone one with a point. That's very cool.

13. You had me at vonnegut. I adore the man and his writing, he helped me through many tough times and I still refer to his books regularly. I am reading "A man without a country" for the umpteenth time. You have a new follower
Cheers, Sausage...

14. Like that first illustration.

15. Lovely post, Jayne. Very magical indeed. And you have a very creative son!

16. Well illustrated...! Very genius he is.

17. Your son is obviously a great communicator - just like his Mum! It's a really great illustration for a very interesting brief.

Sounds like he has an inspired Maths teacher. How wonderful to get students to think about subjects in different ways.

This is such a lovely post Jayne. We all come to Surb Sol because of You!

18. Chris- Same here! It's a real gift.

Sausage- Welcome! Always a joy to have another Vonnegut lover join the gang. I've read that book more than once myself, and it's one of his best (think his last, too).

Hilary- Thanks. He gets it from the other side. ;)

Pranavam- Glad you enjoyed it and thanks for stopping by. :)

SF- We're thinking about a possible collaboration--if we can ever find the time. You're so sweet, thanks for your comments. And yes, spectacular teachers at his school! (I loved this exercise particularly.)

19. Sly, naughty girl... thanks, sweet thing, for the nod. Pixie dust coming your way--loads of it! YOU are a magical creature and wonderful writer.

20. I do loves me some magic. ;) Keep on weaving it!

21. Maria- the dust hasn't settled yet. I'm still floating on it. Thank you, my beautiful friend!

DB- Will work on that, yes. ;)

22. Thanks Barbara! :)

23. How about that drawing...very good.