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Clayton Campbell


Trance of Thought

Trance of Thought is a new series of photographs. The title is a term I learned in meditation. It describes a common condition in which our minds repeat run-on sequences of imagery and verbalizing. These mental loops happen while we are awake and distracted, or asleep while dreaming.

Living in a moment-to-moment mind stream of daily pressures, challenges, relationships, politics, disease, pleasures, or social unease can keep us from finding real clarity and being present, in every moment.

Constant change is the human condition. The mind spins out thoughts, emotions, stories, likes, dislikes, plans, regrets and reactions. There is unrelenting movement, filled with words, ideas, images, and memories. Trance of Thought is about becoming aware of the process of thinking so that we are not in a trance—lost inside our thoughts. Instead, we are aware of them and understand they are not necessarily who we are.

Trance of Thought may sound like an internal process, yet it very much connects me to the present moment. We live in a time of enormous creative, social, environmental, and spiritual change. I’m seeking to find alignment with the meanings behind these transformations by making art that explores the lives and behavior of ordinary people who find themselves in extraordinary circumstances.

The photographs measure 51” x 66”, and are printed in sections, displayed as a grid. There is a grid pattern over most of the images indicating this. In the composition of the Trance of Thought images, I am using my photographs, images of my favorite history and landscape paintings, various textures and painterly overlays that makes an entirely new, unique photograph.

Clayton Campbell



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