Forward to the past

The conclusion of the last blog post triggered me: Reality is chunky while the digital is granular. It reminded me of the period after I quit creating drawings.

Over a timeframe of more than ten years, I was involved in drawing. At first, I practiced technique, and then I mastered it. After that, I waited for inspiration to come to me. It came, but much later than hoped for.

When inspiration came, it came with the necessity to create – or maybe that was one and the same thing. From that moment on, I felt that I was fulfilling a task: a demanding, repetitive task. Necessity led me to explore inroads that seemed like dead-ends at first, and then always miraculously showed a way onwards.

By the time the breakthroughs became apparent, there was no me anymore to continue. My body went through but without conscious oversight. It was necessity that was guiding me, to such an extent that I was unaware of my surroundings when I drew and was unable to stop until I had completed my assignment. I write “I” out of a lack of words to describe who was drawing. Maybe the drawing drew itself.

During the intervals between drawing sessions, I saw reality differently than I see it now. I did not see well-defined objects, each with attributes that can be unambiguously labeled. I did not see doors, trees, cups or kitchens. I did not see red apples or asphalt roads. I saw ever-changing light and color patterns. I saw shades and movements that resonated with me emotionally. None of the characteristics that came to me belonged to defined objects. There were no characteristics and there were no defined objects.

That all changed when the necessity to draw faded away and then stopped. At first, I still saw lights and colors but they became more and more unified and more and more attached to carriers. Until the moment arrived that all was solidified in separate, well-defined objects that waited in stillness. My whole surroundings became compartmentalized into segregated things that could be named and reorganized. I fell from a permanent experience of wonder and an overwhelming richness of combinations and options to a highly organized space containing tools at my command.

The clunky building blocks of reality had become visible to me, and have remained visible ever since. I started to realize that these blocks were what other people see, all the time. Whereas the intense granularity of the world I lived in before is rarely seen and even more rarely described. And yet, maybe it is the experience of this earlier world that I need now to achieve a deeper understanding of the online realm, and through that, of online communication. So, it is a road I will explore.