Every now and again it seems like when I post something I begin to notice similar images showing up all over the place. It’s sort of like when you buy that new car, you think it is unique. Then when you drive it off the lot you begin to see it everywhere!! When I posted an image of some dragonflies I captured recently and posted it up on social media, I have since noticed that dragonfly season is in full effect 🙂
I recently had the honor and privilege to take part in the annual charity event for the UCSD Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) Little Grad Picnic. Where they celebrate the life of those who overcame the odds and obstacles of premature birth. Also honored were the nurses, doctors, and of course the parents. A signed 30″ x 20″ version of my image Imagine Dragons on metal was raffled off along with other donated items from various individuals or organizations. Hopefully the winner is very happy with their prize!!!
There were several people who I got to talk to that were very excited about this image. In particular one wonderful lady by the name of Angela Amoroso who wrote a book about her prematurely-born baby girl Isabella and their loss of her due to SIDS. She told me there are two symbols that are deeply important to her. One is the giraffe which represents Isabella. The other is the dragonfly, in particular this blue-green dragonfly seen in the image, which represents her dad.
In her book Surrounded By Angels she dedicated an emotionally moving chapter to her dad titled Dragonfly Send Me Your Love. When her dad was determined to be terminal, she and her dad visited a church. The story in the sermon was about water-bugs and the metamorphosis that takes place. These particular water-bugs became a “beautiful blue green dragonfly“. After her father passed, part of her mourning and healing process was to visit an ashram in upstate New York where she describes a certain walk she went on.
“Before long we were on a trail that brought us into a lush East Coast forest. The canopy was so green. Suddenly, I heard the sound of running water. I began to run, expecting to find a bubbling brook. I found the brook and a small walking bridge that crossed it. The bridge was brand new, made completely of raw wood. There was no finish on it at all. It felt as though a carpenter had just completed it in time for us to cross it and might be watching us from behind a tree to see if we liked it. I ran to the center of the bridge and to my surprise, I looked down and there were hundreds of beautiful delicate blue-green dragonflies hovering frantically over the water. Just like in the story, the water bug, now turned blue-green dragonfly, wanted so much to go back and tell his friends and family what had happened to him. The story jumped off the page and came to life for me, and so did my dad.”
I feel it is important we make connections in our life. Not just with people, but also ideas, emotions, and purpose. It took a lot of patience on my part to create this image. I created it to be unique, special, and meaningful for the event. To not only touch the child(ren) of the home that it eventually went to but to also be aesthetically pleasing to the adults. It never dawned on me that it would or could touch someone so deeply and have such incredible meaning. The title that I chose for this image was originally focused in on the mind of a child. How a child can imagine anything and it is truth to that child without a shadow of a doubt. Today the meaning of the image goes further and deeper. Now it means to me that in addition to what I imagine there is also this whole other level. When other people see it, now they are adding their imagination to it as well. Had Angela not made her personal connection that the beautiful blue-green dragonfly was a representation of her dad. In turn I would not have made the connection that there is an outside influence, an aura sort-of-speak of imagination outside my own. I wanted to make a great image to help a great charity. In doing that it became a story, a connection, and a life long lesson.
I also want to send out a BIG thanks to those who helped me chose this image for the raffle. From the beginning I felt this was the one and the votes from my family and friends helped confirm that. Thank you!!!