I AM: Resting in the Redwoods, by Roxanne Darling

I AM: Resting in the Redwoods

This photograph is part of my “I AM” series, which are nude portraits of myself exploring the natural states of the female form as expressed in the midst of nature itself. As a 65 year-old woman and emerging artist, I’m curious about the lines between nakedness and sexuality, between self-expression and exhibitionism, between acting and resting, between body perfect and body positive.

The statement in 1s and 0s repeated on the image is the actual binary code for “I AM.” In computer programming, the 1s and 0s represent a binary choice at each step of execution: on or off, yes or no. This appears at first glance to ground the universe in black and white thinking, but in reality, the infinite combinations of 1s and 0s is what creates extraordinary diversity. This diversity is well documented in nature and is becoming ever more appreciated in humanity as well.

I wrote this short poem, inspired by the photograph, which was taken in the old growth redwood forests of northern California.

Resting in the Redwoods

As I entered
the old growth forest
the wood nymphs
whispered my name.

I kept walking.
They kept talking.
“Here, now?” I asked.

“Why wait?” they answered.

Now is
as good a time as any
to be you.

I AM: Resting in the Redwoods, by Roxanne Darling

I AM: Resting in the Redwoods, by Roxanne Darling, artist portrait

You are welcome to download my one page Artist Statement for this piece. (PDF)