M28 The Rhythm of Spring


Traditional Chinese painting emphasizes the harmony of Yin and Yang, that is the use of void and solid, shades, density, contrast, ups and downs, slanting and upright, vertical and horizontal, obscure and obvious, as well as relativity. Likewise, this seemingly very simple photograph conveys a very profound message of Yin and Yang.

Most conspicuously in the center of the photo are three tree trunks whose crowns are not visible. They cut the picture vertically into four parts. The largest section, in the middle, occupies more than 50%. The one on the right occupies about 15%. The one on the far left is 10% while the one on near left 5%. If you start counting from the middle to the right, then to the far left,and finally to the near left, you will find the proportion is 10:3:2:1. The rhythm is a bit like a 4/4 time beat progressing from strong to weak, and then strong to weak again, a passionate but gradually progressive rhythm. You may ask: “Why do we start counting from the middle?” Firstly, it is the habit of human vision to focus first on the biggest part; secondly, in the picture, on the second tree from the left, a branch stretches out horizontally, which breaks the vertical dissections, while it also guides our vision to follow it naturally to the far right, and then continue to go to the far left.