Quietness / 37º45’31’’ N - 122º30’39’’ W is a fine art landscape series about my act of searching for inner quietness and peace of mind. Because of my impulsiveness, I sometimes need a place where I can slow myself down and I have found this constant at Ocean Beach in San Francisco. Going here became a process of meditation, of slowing down and achieving inner stillness. This project is about that process of slowing down and seeking those experiences of calmness. This is why the resulting images are long exposures which talk more about the experience of calmness and peacefulness during the days I go there. The long exposures are a result of me timing myself each time to see how long it took me to reach a state of quietness in my mind, in which I felt connected with the environment. Ocean Beach helped me to achieve this state always because of the vastness of the space, the movement of the waves, the sound of the wind and the ocean.
Each time I go to Ocean Beach and through the process of slowing down, there is a constant back and forth in my mind. To slow down more the process, the project is shot with a 4x5 large format view camera using color negative film and only shoot on image every time I go. When I arrive and start the timer to know how long it takes me to achieve a state of calmness, my mind is constantly asking myself if I’m already calm. In these moments I close my eyes and focus on my breathing, trying to live the moment and let my thoughts drift away. When I feel that I’ve reached that moment of inner quietness, is when I feel a balance inside my body from head to toes, and a connection with the environment. The sounds the waves crashing and the wind passing by, combined with the cadence of the movement in the waves helps to provide a calming effect for me. When I’m going through this process, it is also a time of solitude and self reflection, where I’m alone with my ideas.
The images are presented in a circular format that acts as a shape that enables the observer to focus on the experience similar to seeing through a telescope. The shape also creates a personal view for the observer to that experience of calmness. It resembles the windows of a boat; a view into the hypnotic movement of the ocean and its effect that creates calmness with the passage of time. The final prints are 20 inch circles flush mounted in editions of five.