Walking My Shadow—a Photographic Essay

Early morning walk

At this time of the day the sun is still low yet bright enough to cast crisp shadows of all kinds: from leaves to fence … to the distant edge of a balcony inviting me to proceed downhill as shown below, reprised from the feature image.

shows the double image effect of shadows
Invitation to walk my shadow

I am engaged in the first steps of that walk 

when I catch my shadow pointing to the base of a tree … I take the few steps that will place the top of my hat where it touches it.

As if in a salute to our matinal co-presence I decide to record and explore variants of the situation.

Shows the immaterial nature of the shadow
Visual presence of the shadow as projection

My shadow’s next encounter

with a tree base is socially mediated by the deposit against it of a garbage bag, split open to reveal the leftovers of a hurried apartment emptying at moving time … from bottles to single shoe. “What else?” seems to ask my shadow.

shows a symbolic encounter with social reality
What else is there?

That encounter is followed by one with a trio of shadows:

My own, the one of a friendly low branch peeking from behind an elderly tree trunk and the one created by the folding of the tree bark upon itself. Not unusual in the case of elderly beings, i.e., the outer expression of inner folds.

shows a trio of shadows
Two is company … can three be a crowd?

From natural to man-made items

Another visual ensemble of shadows catches my attention: my own, the one of a post holding a parking sign and, appropriately, the front bumper of a parked car and its shadow, all criss-crossed by the one of the side-walk and projected on the stained street pavement … a real urban “shadowscape”!

All things have shadows too
All things have shadows too

It is time to retreat

to almost where I began with a shadow salute to a flowery bush. Let us call it my …

End image

in lieu of my usual End words!

Retreat into hydrangeas
Retreat into hydrangeas

What are you looking for?