A shout out to those who love to roam the cemeteries

I have to admit that I have always had a fondness for cemeteries...headstones, statues, flowers, hillsides. The solitude, the loneliness. There is something greater than the sum of all of it's parts. It's memories. Some fresh, some long forgotten.

If someone was loved, it shows in monument. If someone was a stranger, a loner, or the last one standing in a long line of dead family members, it shows in simplicity.

I like the shrines of mourning we build to the departed. The spirits of the dead have long travelled from this sphere, but those of us left behind come to these places to feel closer to the ones we miss desperately. It's a place where you can go and talk out loud to no one at all and nobody thinks anything of it. More likely, no one even knows; save the groundskeeper. He's probably not talking.

Over my vacation some friends and myself took a sojourn to explore some of the beautiful cemeteries in the Chicago area. My friend Heather said it was like someone let a bunch of Golden Retrievers out of the car, everyone scattered in different directions. It took forever to round us all up!

It was a photographic adventure. We took pictures of angels, maidens, Mary's and Jesus'. Headstones, crosses, mysterious mausoleums and other oddities we stumbled upon.

It was hot (in the 90's) peaceful, beautiful and mysterious. We visited one cemetery where the graves were covered in weeds and over-growth as tall as myself. Every once and a while you would come across a grave that had sunk into the earth about a foot. Wooden coffins. Eventually, they rot.

The plan is to use our photographic treasures in our art. Sometimes the pieces stand alone. I'll share a few of my pictures.


Class Reunion

Last weekend I attended my class reunion. I'll let you guess what year it was.
I had so much fun seeing my old classmates, too bad more people didn't attend. My closest friends did this time. (most, anyway) I have to admit that after the last reunion I was never going again. This one faired better for me, but I decided I was going to make a bigger effort to talk to people.

It's funny...10 years ago an old friend named Jeff acted like I was an unknown entity. This time he was very warm, chatty and kind.

For me the fun is in seeing how everyone has changed, or in some cases not changed. Talking to them was just a bonus. I never got too in depth with anyone. I felt like all everyone wanted to know was, where do you live? What do you do? Do you have any kids? Pretty surface stuff. I don't think people want to take the time anymore to get to know one another.
I think it's pretty great how the artsy-online communities do take the time to get to know one another through blogs and online groups. A great medium for people to connect and dig a little deeper into the who behind the eyes.