Simply put, this project is an attempt at mapping portions of movements during a meditative Qigong session while hooked up to an SLM device. If none of that makes sense, no worries, I will explain.
Qigong is a meditative practice that allows one to manipulate and balance their life energies that roots back to practices 4,000 years old. Many may be more familiar with other energy work such as Tai Chi or Reiki. I was first introduced to Qigong in 2003 and it has been part of my life since. The particular form of Qigong I practice focuses on feeling the energy flowing around me and moving within that flow. Consider it moving in a path of least resistance. The deeper the state of meditation and the better the connection with the Qi my hands will then move on their own. The movements tend to be very elegant, and I have attempted experiments in the past to try and translate them to visual media. The solution I finally landed on was photography with slow shutter speed.
At the same time, I was working on this project, I was also exploring methods of altered states of consciousness. One piece of research I was writing a paper on for a psychology course was about SLM devices. SLM is short for Sound Light Machine, which is a device that combines LEDs with an output of Binaural audio. All this works in conjunction to entrain the brain to match the wave patterns. The program of this SLM was designed to synchronize your brain through a fourteen-minute meditation session. Rather than spending hours to accomplish a similar state, this would be an accelerated method that would make capturing the movements more concise.
The final project was shot as two experiments. This is the first of the two where no meditation was done beforehand. It was shot on a Canon D350 with an 18-55mm lens. To make the photography more interesting and to better track each finger I wore a set of gloves that has colored LEDs on the tips. This better allows tracking of the movements. A series of photos were taken of different phases as I “felt” one should begin and end.
The complete set of works from this project include one calibration photo, a series of 15 photos that capture different long shutter exposures over a 14 fourteen-minute session, and finally a video derived from several photos from the set that have been edited to be more unified. Individual works from this series will be announced on a release schedule via our Twitter and shown here after release. Works can be viewed and purchased at opensea.io/accounts/TripBlank.