Daniel Watts
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Visions FROM THE SEA, VISIONS OF ME.

 My Sister Emma and I, The Annual Family Camping Trip at Nelsons Bay 2002

My Sister Emma and I, The Annual Family Camping Trip at Nelsons Bay 2002

I spent a great deal of my childhood at the seaside, camping with my family each year at Nelsons Bay, NSW, my sister and I would stand amidst the turning ocean tides, dancing out into the raging sea, pleading to whatever spirit that controls the waves to make them taller, higher, more powerful! The sea has been my eldest inspiration, from very young I went freediving with my dad and lavished in the experience of holding ones breath for as long as possible, embodying a total calm in mind and body to further my stay in the great expanse below. This reverent respect for the Ocean was the catalyst for my love affair with all of nature - later it would help me draw closer to this conscious creative force that I believe orchestrates this uni-versal song of life, in all its limitlessness and possibility. 

Art, Poetry and Photography are the tools with which I illustrate my experience of this Spirituality, this relationship with what I call 'Great Spirit' - connecting with this Spirituality only came about through confronting the throngs of personal trauma, which seems a rhythmic and recurrent exercise that is an inevitability for all life.

 3 Year Old Me, playing with my dads film camera. Adorning a McDonalds Happy Meal Crown 1997

3 Year Old Me, playing with my dads film camera. Adorning a McDonalds Happy Meal Crown 1997

My plea's as a child to the ocean waves, to make them taller, higher and more powerful, always seem a more naive wish as an adult. As children we never seem to understand the magnitude of our wishes, our intentions, we never seem to look beyond the waves of life upon which we are currently aloft. 

An avid sketcher from the time I could use a pencil, I spent the early years of my creative life drawing everything and anything that came to my mind, as best I could. I found myself reaching for a paint brush in highschool, a tool to establish some kind of semblance to the lucid nature of what I was experiencing within my mind. There has been, for as long as I can remember, a great and colourful whirring within myself, things flowing and changing and forming together. Fantastical places, dreams whose vividness competes with waking reality. I have only ever known the experience of being human in a way that is altogether difficult to word, but the suggestion that what we call 'emotion' is a form of life force 'energy' flowing within us,  has been the best visual metaphor I have found to date to explain just how it feels.

The human experience, to me, is spattered unreservedly with the colours of our collaborative emotional symphony. As though we are within an interstellar chorus song, each of us breathing outward our part in its great unfolding. 

I found poetry toward my final days of high school, which soon became a habitual release. Words are something even more like a liquid than water or paint,  to me. I have found if you surrender yourself to poetry, allow the proper emotions to run through the chords of your body, to tremor outward across the keys of your fingertips, harmonise them with your internal energetic flow, you can express yourself with an authenticity that most other forms of writing to not allow.

Poetry is something of a saviour for me, as it gives voice to the visual but often silent side of my creativity and provides a home for the experiences which seldom find understanding in this ever stifling and superficial society. Experiences of remembering other worlds, other lives, of spirits and of magic, of deep personal pain and searing loss. Poetry offers an expression of the deeply intimate, and of the great unknown, all that which is often dismissed as fantasy; poetry harbours, bringing the boats of our eternal selves home to the shore of our waking life. 

 A Mural I drew on a whiteboard with my mate Cameron in 2011

A Mural I drew on a whiteboard with my mate Cameron in 2011

Within the stillness of simpler things lies photography. My first camera was bought for me by my mum when I was a child, a windup disposable, filled with photos of the beach, mostly over exposed, but a few gems lie amidst them. The lesson for me, in photography is remaining within the moment, finding time to stop and recognise the beauty around me that is always there waiting for its ardent seeker. Each year I would get a new disposable camera and each year I would take more photos. Growing up I continued taking photos, but slowly withdrew, as this expression for me is the most personal, often times the most intense, the most abstract - the magic of light, of this life, caught in time. The muse of my lens is always the moon, who has graced her presence within the most photos by far... 

Finally I would like to thank you for reading this far, for being curious enough about my life and my art to want to understand me a little more. There are depths to me that even I am yet to explore in their fullness. I hope to expand upon my creativity in a fruitful way, some way that is both serving and nourishing to others.

For you to find recognition of yourself in my works, to find glimmers of your life, fractals of your memories, some resonance of the way your mind or your heart wanders within its own motions, gives me the greatest joy. Though at times the illusion reigns victorious, we are seldom alone in this world - especially in our ever enduring quest for meaning, purpose and fulfilment.

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Creating this space is a way of sharing a lingering personal fire, from which I hope the likeminded and like-hearted of the world ... and of all the worlds, will come to share in its warmth. 

- With Love, Always, Dan


 My 23rd Birthday, Coalcliff Beach 2017

"A Kiss to the Morning"

Give a kiss to the morning -
We'll be tired and yawning
gasping at the awe inspiring rise
of colored skies; new shining

give an embrace to the shoreline
of a new years resolution
a self realized revolution
a new time
a calenderical reprise

Give a kiss to the morning
We'll be fated- reborn here
cheering at this awe inspiring rise
of a colored sky
A new shining light
an embrace of this borderline
of life

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