Friday, November 18, 2005

Ivy - dead and alive



Whenever I visit a new place, I always try to walk around a neighborhood or two if I can spare the time. I cart along my camera as well so that I can bring back images to illustrate what I was feeling as I drifted through the alien landscape.

On my recent trip to Boston (click here, here, here and here if you haven't seen the original entries) I was lucky enough to have had an hour or so to stroll and shoot. In the middle of a fast-paced business trip amidst a period of intense workload, it was an idyllic way to unwind and let my mind roam. I'd do it again in a heartbeat.

I took these two images a minute apart as I walked through the Back Bay area. They are mere meters away from each other on the wall of a beautiful old apartment building. But they couldn't be more diametrically opposed in the stories they tell.

As an aside, I've always wanted to shoot pictures of ivy, but for some strange reason never managed to get around to it until that day (October 19, at 2:36 and 2:37, respectively). The plant's abilty to cling to a hard, foreign surface and survive through whatever nature can throw at it has always struck a poetic chord with me.

Strikingly, even when it loses its battle, it remains a compelling image.

Your turn: Two parts...
  1. Which one of these images is your favorite, and why?
  2. Please walk through a neighborhood - your own or a new one - with a camera and post an image to your blog. Feel free to share in words what you were thinking as you took the shot. Post the link here so we can all see the uniqueness of your vision.

18 comments:

kenju said...

Hi, Carmi. Hope you're having a good evening. I like both photos; the lush ivy for the color, pattern and sense of nature it imparts. But I also like the photo of dead ivy, for the lacy pattern of the dead tendrils and also the base of brick it clings to.

I will take up your photo challenge soon.

YellowRose said...

Hi Carmi! I like the "alive" pic...just because it has color, it shows life and because I'm a floral designer and I prefer live flora to dead! ;)

Here via Micheles!

buffi said...

I'm not sure which I like best. They both remind me of having to get the "fingers" from the ivy out of the bricks on our old house when we were trying to sell it. What a pain.

Michele sent me tonight. But you know I'm here all the time anyway!

Crazy MomCat said...

The green ivy is very inviting, like it is reaching out toward you and I like the red brick peeking out. But, like Kenju, I also find myself drawn to the dead ivy. The intricate patterns it makes are like the skeleton of what it once was. It keeps my eye drawn to it for some reason.

I like your photo challenge and I'm going out of town this weekend to a friend's. I'll try and remember and participate, although I'm not near the photog you are!

deputyswife said...

I would have to say the green ivy. It is so full of life.

Marie said...

Hi Carmi,
Love the photos -- especially of the live ivy. Even though I know what it's like to have a pesky ivy growing up & damaging the side of a house! It's still pretty to look at....

Thanks for visiting!

Janet said...

Both photos were interesting, but I liked the second one better; maybe it's my frame of mind as we're entering into another winter.

Here's my picture.

kenju said...

Carmi, what is Gravol? Must be a Canadian product, because I have not heard of it. I can just see that sunburned (half) face. I had to keep my hat propped over my face that day, to avoid too much sun. Therefore, I couldn't really see anything on that sailing cruise. Bummer.

surcie said...

Carmi, since you like ivy, have you ever seen kudzu? It grows like crazy in the American South, taking over hills and trees, etc. Here's a site about it: www.jjanthony.com/kudzu

BTW, did you create your own church sign?

Easy said...

I have to say that when I see them both all I can think of is how much ivy screws up the brickwork on a house. But that just me, Mr The-Glass-Is-Half-Empty.

Plumkrazzee said...

I like the dead one. Even though it's death is for one season, it hangs on for dear life, maybe not knowing if it will ever come this way again...?

Sandy said...

At first I thought I'd go with the green ivy. Then, as I started to reflect some, I changed my mind. The branch remains are rather poetic. It reminds me that even in death, those we love leave a mark on our souls. They maybe gone, but their impact echos throughout the balance of our lives and then some.

I'll take you up on the challenge. In fact I just scanned in some photos of our recent trip to the lighthouse and have been looking for an excuse to post them. Thanks!

Beanhead said...

I like the dead one best. Not sure why but I do.

Sandy said...

Perhaps I should have posted my own photo before I posted my comment here so I could have shared the link. :)

http://meandmeonly.blogspot.com/2005/11/photo-challenge.html

margalit said...

I like the alive picture. Not a big Ivy fan tho, I've seen the permanent damage it does to structures and I'd rather see it on the ground than on my building. Plus, you get a lot of bugs when you have Ivy growing up the building.

The dead photo looks like a spider web. Kinda creepy, doncha think?

Michele...

Aginoth said...

The green definitely

Kimberly said...

Hi Carmi! I like the dead ivy photo. I'm too aware of the damage that ivy can do to buildings.

Funny, I posted photos from a walk around my block this afternoon before I'd read your post.

Terri said...

Since I grew up in the Boston area...I love the ivy. A great New England photo.
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