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Chapter 1 "Beautiful..."

Created by John Dill
in
 New York City, Fall/Winter 2013

 

I still get chills thinking about how lucky I was to be taking photos the moment my retina was torn on a  beach in Bali. "Beautiful…" a visual series mixing stills, animations and video. Giving you a peek into what I saw and how it inspired me to create these visuals.

 
 
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I saw such beautiful visuals that seemed to be in slow motion. Later, 
I kept imagining what it was like inside my eye from a macro view. I pictured it to be much more chaotic.

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"Speaking of dark, darkness is when my visual demons come out to play. It can be quite challenging and takes me to an unfamiliar world where I can't connect with people in a normal manner and feel really out of place. I'm working through this slowly and getting used to the anxiety. People have been wonderful, my inner workings are  trying to adjust to familiar situations in new settings with lack of daylight! The yin to my yang continues to stimulate me visually and pushes me to grow in ways I never thought possible. Soon I will run with the shadows and be free as the night. But till then daytime is where I feel the most comfortable.” - John Dill, 2013

 
 
 Two days before my retina was torn I took this yin yang image. I found it later on during my recovery and was drawn to the illustrative nature of what had happened. I had two tears in my good eye and it was time for my bad eye to take the wheel, like a balance of sorts.

Two days before my retina was torn I took this yin yang image. I found it later on during my recovery and was drawn to the illustrative nature of what had happened. I had two tears in my good eye and it was time for my bad eye to take the wheel, like a balance of sorts.

 
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 This is my first stab at playing with the ink. It stuck to my plexi box and created this badass pattern.

This is my first stab at playing with the ink. It stuck to my plexi box and created this badass pattern.


The only time I have ever shown this work was on December 13, 2013 at a small event in Brooklyn I produced with the help of friends. I did not have the resources to produce a print show, so I made "stop motion" animations of my stills and used 9 projectors to fill the three rooms. It was the perfect way to share my experimentation. I remember a girl coming up to me crying, hugging me to thank me for sharing. It was emotional to say the least. Here are a few of my favorites:

 
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One day I will make a photo book of my optical journey… want a copy?