Scale

In my experience, the internet shrinks the world, whittling our sense of scale. Everything is on a screen now, and so many of us have very small screens indeed in our hands. I’m curious to see where this leads us. I know that when I look at thumbnails on screen, I often don’t have any sense of the actual size. Art, in particular, is often absent internal/external cues or references as to size. Sure, I can sometimes look up the dimensions of the original, but numbers are not very sensational.

On this blog, I do a fair amount of marco-photography, making, essentially, small things bigger. This is partially technologically determined, since my camera doesn’t have a long lens, but also because I want to bring things like seeds, seedpods, feathers, arthropods, etc. into focus, by which I mean your consciousness, or at least your attention.

Above is a detail of a drawing by George Boorujy. You may recognize it as a close-up of a Blue Jay. You may also have some sense of the size of this relatively common bird (which is also highly vocal). It’s bigger than a House Sparrow, smaller than an American Crow. About this image, though, you may be hard-pressed to have a sense of the size of it. Because it does exist on paper, not just digitally. Is it field guide-sized, life-sized, poster-sized?

Here’s the artist and his work-in-progress in his studio.

I met George by way of this blog: he was researching Four Sparrow Marsh, which I’ve posted about several times, and which he has an intimate connection with. He did the original artwork for the plaques that detail the local habitat there. Those plaques are slowly being absorbed back into the marsh. He tells that story here, where you can also learn about his NYC Pelagic project.

We had a great visit to his studio, where he’s been working feverishly to prepare for his big show.

Blood Memory, work by George Boorujy, will be shown at P.P.O.W Gallery from March 15-April 14. Mark you calendars.

6 Responses to “Scale”


  1. 1 Meemsnyc March 2, 2012 at 8:29 pm

    His work is amazing. The details are outstanding. I love bluejays. I have always loved bird watching in my backyard. I have seen an egret and hummingbird up close in my yard. The first time I ever saw a hummingbird up close. It made me squeal in delight. I didn’t think birds like that we’re here in staten island.

    • 2 mthew March 3, 2012 at 8:01 am

      Staten Island, with all its green space, has some excellent habitat for birds. Hummingbirds can be tempted with appropriate flowers as well as hummingbird feeders. We have one species up here, the Ruby-throated, but others do get blown in. A west coast species has been hanging around the Museum of Natural History all winter.

  2. 3 Marielle March 2, 2012 at 11:50 pm

    You went to visit George without me? I’m offended!


  1. 1 Blood Memory « Backyard and Beyond Trackback on March 16, 2012 at 4:21 pm
  2. 2 Boorujy: Passenger | Backyard and Beyond Trackback on November 6, 2014 at 1:44 pm

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