In my Glimmers series I used photographs from my archives layered with found vernacular photos to reinterpret my own work and memories; reaching for the light in dark times. In this series I incorporate something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue to express the yearning for something to pin our hopes on; gathering together scraps of magic. A glimmer is the exact opposite of a trigger— it is some kind of cue, either internal or external that brings one back to a sense of joy or safety. A glimmer can be anything from catching a view of the sunset out your window to feeling the softness of the sheets on your bed after a long day. A glimmer is a moment that elicits a spark of appreciation or hope, a spirit of safety and connection, as if, just for a second, all's right with the world. The concept is part of Polyvagal Theory, coined by behavioral neuroscientist Stephen Porges, with the term glimmer introduced in 2018 by licensed clinical social worker Deb Dana.
For me glimmers come in as feelings of awe in the presence of Nature. Awe is an overwhelming feeling of reverence, admiration, even a shiver of mystery in knowing that you are connected to something larger than yourself; something powerful and wise and grand. A sense of wonder arises from the profound curiosity and amazement for things beyond your immediate understanding, experienced with the full spectrum of the senses. I raise my camera to my eye in an act of reverence; later I relive these moments of magic again by layering images, alchemizing past awe with present realities. In our overstimulated world, glimmers can be the answer to regulating our overwhelmed nervous systems; a small step toward helping your body and mind feel both safe and connected. Science shows it is possible to anchor yourself in this hope even in the darkest of times, and who among us couldn’t use a respite, however fleeting, in the cacophony of our chaotic world.