Mind-Body Medicine PhD Student Uses Photography to Express Human Consciousness, Connection, and Transparency

Collage%20of%20Hendickson%20Movement - Mind-Body Medicine PhD Student Uses Photography to Express Human Consciousness, Connection, and Transparency
Joshuah Hendrickson and an Image from his “Movement” Series


Joshua Hendrickson is a doctoral student in the “Integrative Mental Health” specialization in Saybrook’s School of Mind-Body Medicine.  Josh spent his youth in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan surrounded by a family of teachers, social workers, nurses, and artists.  Growing up with a family of artists taught him to appreciate the arts, a tradition he is carrying on in his unique manner.  During his youth he spent time with an Aunt at her art gallery, watched his Uncle direct an orchestra, or enjoyed his grandmother sharing her love of photography.  Josh is using photography as his medium to explore the evolution of human consciousness.

Josh is blending photography with what he has learned as a social worker to explore the deeper levels of human connection and transparency through three series in a comprehensive artistic project. The name of the first series is “Transparency Ice Emotion,” a photography project shot in black and white.

Josh explains his vision of “Transparency Ice Emotion:”

“People often believe that their emotions are found within only to be expressed and visible upon command. The belief that emotions can be separate from our social interactions creates artificial boundaries in our relationship with the world. Ice as a ‘transparent mask’ is a ‘play’ on this belief.

My intent for this project is to use a progression of photographs that use different qualities of ice to point to the impermanence and ever-shifting emotional states that we all experience. The black and white presentation works analogously with our tendency to understand our emotions in dualities such as happiness vs. sadness and restful vs. anxiousness.

Life is a process as is the awareness of our emotional states and their impact on our relationships with the world. It is our hope that as the ice melts and our emotions are more freely expressed– a noticeable shift occurs in our being.” 

For the second series — titled “Interconnected” — Josh connected human models using marine bungee.  Marine bungee is a thick cord and Josh used it as a way to connect the models in a web of intricacy.  Six models worked together to explore what it meant to actually be connected.  Within the web of connectedness, models had a choice, either to explore what it means to be connected and provide and receive support, or what it feels like to resist the web.  In this exploration the models chose to work together and to play and explore rather than be inhibited by the connection. 

The third and final series in this project is titled “Movement.” Josh states that when “one is able to be more fully aware and transparent, more deeply connected, the ability to move in this world becomes boundless.”  Movement utilizes long-exposure photographic techniques that depict movement with an ethereal quality.

Josh also discussed his unique role as the photographer and participant.  He explained that “I am an active participant and researcher and part of the co-creation of the project.  The relationship between model and photographer unfolds and together they are co-creating the process of this work of art.”

Josh presented “Transparency Ice Emotion” in exhibits in Long Island and New York City.  For Josh, presenting one’s creative vision and work involves an exploration of emotions.  He explains that, for him, stepping into the role of artist and presenter is a motivating force, part of the human force. 

Josh is looking forward to the School of Mind-Body Medicine Imagery class with the idea that he may be able to develop a guided imagery script from “Transparency Ice Emotion.”  His ideas are to develop an experiential exhibit, perhaps one that walks the audience as a group through the process of becoming more transparent, connected, and free to move.


To learn more about Josh’s creative endeavors follow the following links:

Movement  http://bit.ly/1nPNBcL

Transparency, Ice, Emotion  http://bit.ly/WCYoIP

Interconnected http://bit.ly/WCWwji







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