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Enfolding Circles in Today's Photography

Updated on April 11, 2014

Use Creativity With Your Circles of Thoughts

I think I think in circles, so I eagerly embrace the challenge of developing an article based on the theme circles.

In the forefront of my thought is the concept of circles that I capture in many of my photographs, so I use only my photographs for illustration here.

ALL PHOTOGRAPHS Copyrighted by Leslie Sinclair 2013 unless otherwise cited


no use permitted

Circular thinking may be a handicap and a term of disparagement for someone frequently criticized as unable to make headway in their thought processes. I agree and I disagree.

It depends upon the usefulness and the veracity of the premise. If my starting thought is: I need to lose weight and then every third thought that follows is: I'm addicted to sugar, then for every two beads of variety that I add to my thought chain, I'll only end up splicing the start and the end of my conjecture, linking my need to my addiction, knowing in the end, that I'm addicted to my need, with the necklace knotted around my brain.

Then again, if I think of my circular thinking more in the vein of a Slinky, then an adventurous ride through the versatility of flexible, but related, thinking awaits me. A tightly folded coiled toy is in sync, touching the whole process. When I want to explore a figurative tangent I need only stretch out the coil, allowing myself to ignore the precursor thought.

To use the same example, my starting point is still: I need to lose weight, but the next thoughts can take me anywhere, because that nifty toy will stretch right out into a straight, kind of wavy, line if I want to anchor it with a tack thought such as: I'll try natural sugars until I find one that satisfies my addition to sweets - my mode of choice. And that is how I discovered coconut sugar.

It wasn't until I uploaded my photographs that I realized I had been so attracted to circles. Preferring the spring to the head in the Jack in The Box toy, I approach most photography with a closed spring of an idea that I soon pop out of the box, leaving the head inside and shutting the lid, as the spring and I stretch and pull elements from the scenes of my days.

Please let me know your thoughts about my journey in circles.

The Circles of Spheres

When I bought my first digital camera, a Canon with a then hefty 1.25MP size, I was thrilled with the ease of use.

My Chinon 35MB camera had retired to a case on a shelf while I decided how I could use it in an art piece after it plunged into senility, forgetting to snap the shutter one time too often.

This photograph is from one of my explorations with the nifty little digital number. I took all the other photographs with either my Pentax K10d or Pentax Q, or with my iPhone.

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What spurred the development of hot cocoa in a mug, you may ask. Well, Burke is the one to answer you. He'll take you on journeys and side trips and bring you back round to the to the staring point on the circle, latching on as he coils the thought into one perfect loop.


The Making of Abstract With My Camera

On a cold Spring afternoon I caught three critters in this photograph of fish and guest in a circular pool that is now occupying my heart.

Circular Thinking in Your Life

Do you ever think in circles? If so, or if not, please tell us how or why not?

Splendid Circular Crystal Chandelier

When I think of a crystal chandelier I don't tend to think of a literal lamp comprised of row upon circular row of crystal beads. Perhaps that is why I find this one so compelling, the unexpectedness of it all.

Craftsmanship in an Amtrak Station

A layover between arrival in LA, from San Diego, and my departure on the northbound train gave me time to explore the monumental station. I find the hand carved look of the wood ceiling panels in the background a nice contrast with the round lamp fixture.

Backwoods Life in my Background

I am most attracted to the marks of the axe that was used to slay this giant old tree, and to its afghan of moss growing tenderly over the remains.

Circles of Compassion

"Our task must be

to free ourselves

from this prison

by widening our

circles of compassion

to embrace all living creatures

and the whole of nature

in its beauty."

Albert Einstein


Round & Round Roses With Delight

The sight of some roses evokes the peace and freedom of hopes at the dawn of a new family's life. I carried a single yellow rose when I walked down the aisle and can read the joy of freshness in their circular coils.

Inner Sanctum

On a walk in my neighborhood I happened upon a small city park in a most unexpected location. Where a street dead ends at an alley this small park occupies what would have been an undeveloped city lot. A sculptor interpreted circular enclosures in a variety of ways and this one attracted me to the enclosing core.

A Not So Hazardous Coil

What a treasure to find on a rainy day! Across the street lies a large half-block lot that has been prepared to building a new apartment building. One corner is confined by the end strip of this yet to be unrolled wrap, guardian of the thin strip of weeds that wintered over, all of this secured by a well used portable set up of cyclone fencing.

Petpetually Blooming Circular Flowers

I like to think it is a result of my comments to the owners of this building about the lack of beauty to be found outside our doors, to the lack of blooming plants that could be beautifying our comings and goings, that a line of these intensely painted metal flowers have been planted in the expansive sidewalk that skirts one side of the building.

Big Fat Surprise

After six decades of cooking one would think I would know that fat congeals in discs, but I looked in amazement at this freshly made observation that I have a pan full of circles of fat, as if they were pressed and cut from a cookie press, or minted of sanded shells. Maybe it's that I'm only using coconut fat for frying these days.

Life in the Roundscape

I make exceptions for goldfish, that enclosing them in bowls and pools and ponds. I think it stems from my childhood days spent on my grandparents estate north of Seaside, Oregon. Their house sat on the crest of a hill, surrounded on three sides by a lake.

At the end of the tree rose and towering evergreen tree lined drive, encircled by the driveway, was a huge fishpond. Goldfish swam among the blooming lilypads, hiding from us kids when we were too noisy or rambunctious, and gracing us with visions of their underwater world, as they swam the daily rounds.

Still a Domestic at Heart

I experimented with making tapioca, as called for on the box from the organic foods store, with water and plant milk, without eggs, using only coconut sugar. I like it better with eggs and lots of milk. My favorite milk so far is a blend of almond and coconut. The circular pan's holding circles of spheres of tapioca.

The Hoof Prints Of Your Lives

This photograph brings to a close my journey through circles in my photographic life. I took it on a hike in Southern California along a trail that is mostly used by horseback riders.

When I was raising a family we could always look out our windows and see horses grazing and running, one of my favorite sights, and these prints evoked that reminiscence. May your lives be overflowing with enfolding images of circular joy.

Slow Circles of Nature

"Everything that slows us down

and forces patience,

everything that sets us back

into the slow circles of nature, is a help.

Gardening is an instrument of grace."

Katharine Whitehorn

Healing Circles

Simple & Meaningful Gold & Sterling Circle Heart Pendant

Circles of a Different Nature

How About You......... - Have you ever photographed your neighborhood?

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    • lesliesinclair profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago

      @Pat Goltz: I think they're the happy sign.

    • Pat Goltz profile image

      Pat Goltz 

      5 years ago

      I take pictures everywhere! Neighborhood included. I like circles very much. They speak of perfection.

    • MBurgess profile image

      Maria Burgess 

      5 years ago from Las Vegas, Nevada

      Your images are very nice here! I love the way you described your photos and shared your thoughts in this lens. It was an elegant read! =)

    • PhilVardy profile image


      5 years ago

      All the time!! especially after a fresh snow fall - or better yet, an ice storm!

    • Elyn MacInnis profile image

      Elyn MacInnis 

      5 years ago from Shanghai, China

      I have - but I should do it again... good idea!

    • Elyn MacInnis profile image

      Elyn MacInnis 

      5 years ago from Shanghai, China

      Totally cool. I like your photos - they are very eccentric and interesting!

    • AcornOakForest profile image

      Monica Lobenstein 

      5 years ago from Western Wisconsin

      This is a beautiful collection of images! I am struck by how - even though I have not seen where any of these were taken - they triggered memories for me and the circles in them were a big part of that. I had no idea how much I was noticing circles in my everyday life. Very interesting!!

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Circles resonate a lot with me...I like the images ver much.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Very nice images.

    • SheGetsCreative profile image

      Angela F 

      5 years ago from Seattle, WA

      I think in circles too :) AND I recognize that Amtrak light fixture!

    • Vikk Simmons profile image

      'Vikk Simmons 

      5 years ago from Houston

      Most of my photographs these days are of my backyard and my dogs since I can't leave the house much as I'm my mom's caregiver. Enjoyed seeing all your photographs.

    • LiteraryMind profile image

      Ellen Gregory 

      5 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      Yes. I enjoy photographing pretty eye catching things when I see them -- especially in nature. I save them up and use them in my lenses. You made great use of yours here. Very inventive.


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