Observation · Perception · Psychology

Self-Perception and Self Observation

Part I

Self-perception is being aware of the fact what we are. We do things repeatedly, routinely, spontaneously, rarely, consciously and sometimes unconsciously. Out of these what defines the actual us. The truth is we are an amalgam of all these. We make informed decisions and sometimes give it a go.

My favorite is we become what we do repeatedly. Over the course of time we develop our attitude and traits from our behavior. It has been formalized in Self-perception theory by psychologist Daryl Bem. We return a lost wallet because we believe in honesty. We smile at a stranger because we are friendly. We go to watch plays because we are art connoisseurs. Or is it so. Didn’t we return that wallet because we thought what our friends would think. Didn’t we smile at the stranger because otherwise it would have been rude. Didn’t we go to movies because everybody else was going. Our idea of self-perception is so much dependent on other’s perception of us.

Observing our own behavior is a scary thing because we are un-accustomed to it and the results might not be what we want it to be. If we look at ourselves for a day and draw reasoning sketch why we do what we do, it will scare the shit out of us. It is not one factor that cause our action to be in a certain way. There are many of them: Priming, Genetics, Social norms, Core values etc. The majority of human beings have little sense of who they truly are and rarely question their own subjective beliefs about themselves and their life. It is perfectly acceptable to belong to the majority. But if one wants to join the minority Self-observation is a skill which can be developed and cultivated. Self-observation is an art and science of its own and and an interesting one.

Acrylic · Art · Canvas · Nature

Acrylic on Canvas: Part 5

Theme: Contrast

Poppies: On this stretched canvas on wood of size 12”*12” I intended to put only black and white to create a contrast. Contrast of dull and bright, of glee and woe and of light and dark. Background came out as dramatic and dull as I expected with use of a little glazing medium. A flower like poppy totally balanced the dreariness of the background but then I drew those dark buds. It seemed that only black and white are not enough to create the consonance. One of them always tend to overpower the other. The canvas needed a decisive factor. And red was perfect. With time I have learnt that the more you let go of control on the brush the more beauty gets added to the piece. Poppy’s petals are imperfect, stems are imperfect and even the pistil in the centre of flowers are imperfect. But together it turned out a perfect the-bedroom-wall piece.

 

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Poppies on my bedroom wall

 

Art · Random

Old and vintage

Medium: Ink on paper

Oh well, sometimes when you find an old page, you make it more vintage. Or when you do not find one, you get it printed and make it fun and vintage. I did the second one and it was fun. You will be bound to agree with one. Or I hope so.

 

 

Nature · Travel

Travel Diary: Niagara Falls

This month one more item got checked off my bucket list. It was Niagara Falls and it certainly has added a lot more than a check to my experiences. People say that Canada has a better view of the grandeur of the Falls. But in my opinion American side was no less. The three falls, Horseshoe, American and Bridal Veil constitutes Niagara falls. American and Bridal veil are on American side so it naturally gives a better view from Canadian side. Horseshoe Falls form a natural boundary between United States and Canada. In the snap below, the first fall on the left side is American Falls. A small island known as Luna Island separates Bridal Veil from the American Falls. At the far right end after Goat Island and below the massive clouds of mist, there is the largest fall of Niagara, the Horseshoe Falls.

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Niagara Falls
View from Niagara State Observation Tower

Main tourist attractions of Niagara are Maid of the Mist boat tour and Cave of the Winds. Maid of the mist boat tour starts from a rather calm point near the Rainbow bridge, and takes you all the way to breathtaking Horseshoe Falls through American and Bridal Veil Falls.

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American & Bridal Veil Falls
View from Maid of the Mist boat

As the boat passes Bridal Veil Falls, you will see a colony of gulls near Horseshoe Falls and you will envy them to be that near to this natural wonder. When the boat approaches the Horseshoe Falls, you will be soaking up in the mist and will barely manage to keep open your eyes.

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Horseshoe Falls
View from Maid of the Mist boat

Just when you will think the view can not get better, it will leave you speechless. The water falling down with a tremendous force, the mist rising from the river and you will not be able to have enough of this over-whelming moment.

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Horseshoe Falls

This video is an attempt to seal that moment so I can relive them whenever I want to.

This was not it. Cave of the Winds is a man-made stairs to the Bridal Veil Falls. An elevator will ride you down to the base of the fall and you can see the fall infront of you falling with such of force that it seems to take you down with it. Now you have the option to just enjoy the view or get soaked up in the misty water. Well it took me two attempts to gather my courage to go to the fall. Don’t judge me if I didn’t want to meddle with that force and it was freezing cold there. But one does not go to Niagara often so I went up anyway. And trust me it was every bit of it was worth.

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Cave of the Winds

I will probably visit Niagara from Canada side once just to know why people say what they say.

Travel · Uncategorized

Travel Diary: Washington

Washington, D.C : A city that has been keeping a humongous amount of heritage in a mere area of 68 square mile. One can cover the entire city in a day on foot tirelessly. Of course it excludes the time one spends with architecture, museums and art galleries, and trust me on this when I say that the excluded time is atleast 2 complete days. Six of the top 10 buildings in the American Institute of Architects’ 2007 ranking of “America’s Favorite Architecture” are in the District of Columbia: the White House; the Washington National Cathedral; the Thomas Jefferson Memorial; the United States Capitol; the Lincoln Memorial; and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. These structures are combination of the neoclassical, Georgian, gothic, and modern architectural styles.

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United State Capitol

The most visited museum in Washington is  National Museum of Natural History which covers sea habitants, plants, mammals and geographical evolution. Beautiful seashells, corals, T-rex skeletons, gems, rocks and wildlife portraits are on display.

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Ringed and Purple seashells
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RedFox
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Black Swan

Washington is a treat for art connoisseurs. The National Gallery of Art and its attacked sculpture garden has works of American and European art. The gallery has two building connected by an underground passage. The West Building has an exquisite collection of European paintings and sculptures and American artists. Highlights of the collection include many paintings by Claude Monet, Vincent van GoghLeonardo da VinciJan Vermeer and Rembrandt van Rijn.  The East Building focuses on modern and contemporary art, with a collection including works by Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Jackson Pollock, Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein. One can spend an entire day in this gallery and it will even not be sufficient to just go through the gallery.

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Ceres (Summer)
oil on canvas by Antoine Watteau
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Venus of the Doves
Marble Sculpture by Etienne-Maurice Falconet

 

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A painter working on imitation A Pastoral Visit by Richard Norris Brooke
oil on canvas

The gallery has been sub-sectioned as per the periods as well as genres which makes the visit easily accessible even for an amateur. Although the museums have multiple scheduled guided tours, the audio-aided guide would have been a good step for more fruitful visit.

Just a day · Listening to nature · Nature

That rainy day

Oh the lovely rain and your lovely timing

Oh the beauty of the peacock feathers

And the smell of wet grass under my feet

And above all you the music of drops and drizzle

As if you wanted me to tune in your rhythm.

 

Oh you chilly sweet breeze with a silky touch

Oh you swiftly bent branches of that olive tree

And the sound of sparrows swinging on you

As if you were leading me to make a twirl.

 

Oh you yellow flowers with a lot of red tint

And the blue sky with a mesmerizing rainbow

Oh the little pool with brownish green pebbles

As if you were making the stage for THE perfect dance.

Books

The God of Small Things

The God of Small ThingsThe God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Don’t judge a book by its cover, is certainly not a quote for this one. It has the prettiest cover I ever saw. And the writing is equally captivating. The plot is set around Rahel-Estha, the two-egg twins, their mother and the god of loss. From the very beginning, you will be wondering what can go wrong with these simple characters with so ordinary lives and by the end when you can imagine the possibilities, you will start wishing not to happen that. Arundhati Roy may have broken quite a few “norms” of society in her story but she has well-weaved the story of Paradise Pickles and Preserves, Airport Fairy, the Boy in Pointed shoes and well-portrayed the bond between two dizygotic twins, the twins and the Sophie Mol & a woman and the God of Small Things.

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