The word #object has come up a few times in the last week or so. First I heard about composing with things…and started thinking about how “things”…particularly photographs help me with my writing. And then Annelise Wunderlich at KQED offered a Do Now focused on selecting an ordinary object, experience, or material to represent or inspire you. (You can join in by posting yours on Twitter, Google+, Instagram, or Facebook using the #donowobject and #clmooc tags)
A number of ideas came to mind when I fhought about how I might objectify myself. Dandelions and other weeds come to mind…I love the way they thrive wherever they find themselves, rather than being dependent on others for ideal growth conditions.
But I think glass is the object I will pick. Geoff and I have been looking for beach glass on all of our beach walks over the last year. This glass on the beach is pretty rare–probably due to the ban on glass on the beach over the last decade. But we do find it–and that search for treasure on the shore has helped me to pay close attention the the interesting qualities of the glass.
Beach glass is not transparent. Unlike a window, it is not easy to look inside or through. Time and tumbling have created an opaque quality, no longer shiny and clear but instead the surface suggests a history hidden in the sanded surface.
My favorite pieces of beach glass are smooth to the touch and feel good in your hand. They are worn and rounded rather than sharp and angular. We often categorize the pieces of glass as we pick them up…some are young and sharp, juveniles in the glass world. But it’s the pieces worn smooth that are prizes in the glass game.
And beach glass plays well with others. It mingles with rocks and shells, sea creatures and seaweed. It hides in the sand, gets tossed in the tide, and reveals itself only when you take time to look.
Beach glass is my choice as an object of inspiration and representation.