Points of View

multiple readings of the landscape


While I was editing headers for this blog site I paused on the image above. Taken from a kite along the edge of Pond N1 in the Don Edwards Wildlife Refuge, it shows a high-salinity saltern with its borrow ditch. The image could inspire many different readings. A microbiologist might be drawn to the orange/red colors and their suggestion of abundant carotene rich organisms. Or perhaps the microbiologist would note the pond floor’s fractured heaving pattern characteristic of micro-organism rich mud. A salt producer (specifically a waterman) might read the color as indicating a pond ready for cycling. A cultural geographer might note the marks of the clamshell dredge that created the levee enclosing the pond. Perhaps a hydrologist would smile at the ‘frozen’ shape of a dendretic marsh channel. What would an artist see? A child? My point is that potential readings of this landscape abound and that they would be interesting to gather, juxtapose, and present.

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