#13 Solar Flash - Follicular

every phase #13 - follicular - 4th cycle

solar flash

My plan for this piece was with a completely different intention when I began but the more I began to shoot,  the more I was drawn back towards my roots in the darkroom with one of my favorite processes, solarization.  And it started to digitally 'bloom'. 

Solarization is the process of re-exposing photographic paper during the development process. As soon as you see the image appearing on the paper in the developer, you pull it out and re-expose it to light.  The result is an eerie silver image which contains light lines between the shadows and the highlighted areas. Areas that have been exposed the least are affected the most during the re-exposure of the print. 

I have always seen the orchid as an elegant study of contrasts.  Both masculine and feminine, as the meaning of “orchi” in Greek is “testicles” and the moth orchids usually stems are structured and linear, yet the blooms are full, soft, and almost appear swelling. The egg follicles swell to prepare and estrogen increases to thicken the uterine lining so that it can host an egg--just as the possibilities in our lives reveal themselves, many times in a variety of colors out of the black and white, so that we can discover them.  

As estrogen rises during this phase, it boosts the brain's working memory capability--the ability to handle complex processing tasks.  Estrogen's effect on the brain greatly improves the ability to solve problems, strategize, and plan.  Visible in this piece, the follicular phase is all about preparation and discovery as the follicle swells, stimulated by the arrival of FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone). What are you able to see through the black and white?  The contrast of these two, as well as the solarization--or your polarization, allows all of the other colors to stand out.

Everything is possible in art.

& in case you've forgotten, I love you 💌

How Does the Infradian Rhythm Influence Your Body and Brain? 

  • The infradian rhythm creates a 25% change in your brain chemistry over the course of the month?  
  • Your metabolism speeds up and slows down predictably across the month and that you need to change what you eat and the intensity of your workouts each week in order to optimize your metabolism?
  • Your cortisol levels are higher in one part of your infradian cycle, so pushing yourself through an intense workout bumps up cortisol levels even further, adding to your stress and inflammation, disrupting your hormones, and making you feel anxious and unfocused?
  • People with female biochemistry need more sleep than men because we have a more complex brain and it needs 20 minutes longer to clean itself and reset for the cognitive day?
  • People with female physiology tend to need less in the way of extreme self-care practices because we have more efficient biology. 

As this list shows, your body and brain change significantly throughout the course of a month. Specifically, we move through four distinct phases within the course of 28-days. They are: 

  • Phase 1: Follicular (the 7 to 10 days after your period)
  • Phase 2: Ovulatory (the to 4 days in the middle of your cycle)
  • Phase 3: Luteal (the 10 to 14 days between ovulation and your period)
  • Phase 4: Menstrual (the 3 to 7 days of your period)
During each of these four phases, you experience normal hormonal fluctuations that influence your body temperature, skin elasticity, sleep cycle, energy, emotions, and cognitive function

*Info above from floliving.com

More info on the Follicular phase here

More info on infradian rhythm + hormonal health: Womancode + In the flo