Volans, Diamond Nights series

As night falls over the Makgadikgadi Pans, giant trees stand starkly against the horizon. Leafless branches reach for the light. On the opposite side of the sky, Earth’s shadow is rising. True wildness manifests itself in the form of curling black branches in November, silhouetted against an indigo sky.

Time exposures blend the boundaries between the visible and the invisible. There is a middle zone where splendor comes into being, where two different realities mingle and blur. If magic exists anywhere, it is here.

Our relationship to the wild has always played an important role in my work. This series was inspired by two fascinating, scientific studies that connect tree growth with celestial movement and astral cycles.

Researchers from the University of Edinburgh have shown that trees grow faster when high levels of cosmic radiation reach the earth’s surface, concluding that cosmic radiation impacts tree growth even more than annual temperature or rainfall. Secondly, renowned researcher, Lawrence Edwards, found that tree buds changed shape and size rhythmically, in regular cycles all through winter, directly correlating to the moon and planets.

David Milarch, founder of the Archangel Ancient Tree Archive, has said, “Trees are solar collectors. I believe energies inside the earth are transmuted and transmitted into the cosmos by the trees, so the trees are like antennas, senders, and receivers of earth energies and stellar energies.”