Bugs Over Words

tiger moth resting on sign

This kind of photo sort of represents my website in a nutshell. Except maybe the “eating” part.

When the words fall right on the page (printed or webbed) or into the ear, they exude a magical quality that exceeds the breadth of the explicit information they are communicating. As a writer and reader, a lover of words, whether it is a sense of wonder or catharsis or a secret shared, it is quite apparent when it happens: I’m rising; I’m eager, because I absolutely know there is more – then all of a sudden, as if transported to the peak of a mountain, I can see it all. Everything makes sense, even if it is a micro-moment within the age of a hundred, three hundred, a thousand pages. It is good to know something once in a while, and I imagine this was part of the original magic of words. It seems people may have overindulged in trying to “know” things we cannot or things we already know to be false, often times to our own destruction or misfortune. Sometimes it seems hard to find those just right words in the overspoken world, whether to hear, to write, to read, to speak them, but in spite of the ubiquitous chatter and type, they are out there. They are falling like soft snow and light rain; they are rising like mountains and even the sun. They are fluttering like a butterfly and stinging like a wasp. They are parting from just wet lips and dancing at the tips of fingers with the musical clicks of keyboards.

Another kind of special word moment can happen when a bug falls into (or lands on) a space of typeface. The juxtaposition of bug beauty and typographical beauty can make for a striking, layered, and perhaps even surreal image. Of course, much like magical words, this type of bug shot is one that usually keeps me looking forward as well. If I am so lucky in the first place to find this subject, the next turn of fortune is whether the bug is on a poignant letter(s) or word (I think our tiger moth fell short here with “eating”) and an enhancing typeface. As the documentarian of bugs over words, the chief technical difficulty is finding a good plane of focus where a flat  background of words will conflict with the bending, jutting and curving of an insect or spider.  Bugs typically get preference as far as occupying the field of focus, but it all has to fit in with my vision and framing for the shot.



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