Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Dreams of an Artificial Tree.

I was deliberately going for a dream-like quality in taking this shot. I made several attempts both in shooting and in editing. In the end, this was the dreamiest version. Occasionally, clients report only recalling a fragment of a dream. Often that is the most valuable. The shot reminded me of a fragment, in the sense that there seems to be something more to say. I feel that the simplicity of the dream fragment encourages imagination and prompts the dreamer's own interpretation. This is one of the key differences between Freudian and Jungian dream analysis. Freud is rather strict about what makes of a "proper dream", whereas Jung argued for including even the post-dream reflective material. But there is no right or wrong method. In the image, a very artificial tree sits in the street. Its only purpose is decoration. It isn't a real tree but it is a real artificial tree. Supposing the dreamer dreams of an artificial tree. We could track down all the symbolism of trees, but it might not take us very far. What did the dreamer feel about its artificiality? Jung (and Gestalt theorists) felt that even Inanimate objects in dreams could represent parts of the dreamer. Perhaps there is something in the dreamer's self that is perceived as inauthentic. Perhaps the dreamer knows unconsciously that he or she is projecting a false self. So there is something more to say that goes beyond "tree".