Eldritch

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Do you ever feel as though you are looking directly at something, but it is just beyond your perception? An eldritch presence that you can sense through intuition and the hairs on your arms…

That is how I felt at the location of this photograph.

When I looked at it later, I saw a face in the bark of the tree left of centre. Then I saw two more in the same tree. Then I saw the outline of a figure by the tree on the far right hand side that looked ghostly or made of rock. Then I saw two or three shadows of people in the centre peering between the two trees. Each figure I saw felt more creepy than the last, because it had remained hidden for longer and therefore presented itself to me as more tricky and sinister.

This is the Pareidolia effect, which interests me so much I made a whole series of paintings to explore it.

Pareidolia is a psychological phenomenon involving a stimulus (an image or a sound) wherein the mind perceives a familiar pattern of something where none actually exists. Common examples are perceived images of animals, faces, or objects in cloud formations, the man in the moon, the moon rabbit, and hidden messages within recorded music played in reverse or at high- or lower-than normal speeds

It is the brain searching for something familiar in the obscure. In this case, probably searching for something remotely sensible to which I could ascribe this feeling of oddness and otherworld. Eerie the thought that there are not only things that are unknown to us, but also things that are unknowable.

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Hanging on the edge
Of contact with the
Unknowable
It is the strangeness
That pulls you in
Not the phenomenon itself
But the eldritch aura it emits
It reels you in
The more you stare
The more it reels

To shake it off
Simply reaffirm
Your deep-seated belief
Of what is possible

To open unto it
Is to witness a thing
That will change you
Forever
Though
You may forget it

Instantly
(of course)
Due to its
Inherent oddity
That has no place
In a human mind

Allow yourself

To treasure

The peculiar

But

Allow yourself
To become fearful
And it will

Consume you

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