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Thursday, September 3, 2009

Thursday entry: Backing Up

Among the three photographs I chose to share in the critique blog from my work last semester, I felt that each one followed a different structure, and I am concerned that this will prevent the creation of a cohesive body. The first image Dad Dressed As Mom Disguised As a Mouse is closest to a traditional portrait, maybe minus the mouse accessories. The entire face is in the center of the frame and cropped just below the shoulders, revealing the model’s entire face. The short depth of field adds more emphasis to the details of what is in the foreground, and although the background has texture, it is not enough to distract. I really enjoy the simplicity of this composition. The next is Empty and Full. I think it maintains that same simplicity with an even softer pallet but it is most notably different because of its composition. The person is placed to the far left of the frame while the image is sharply cropped right above the mouth. I think it follows the rule of thirds with the banana peel and is less symmetrical than the first. As far as the title goes, it doesn’t directly address the objects in the image. I think it’s more of a portrait of feeling rather than a person. And the last one, Mechanisms for Purity does the same.

Since I have been considering the interpretation of portraiture, I enjoy the idea of keeping such varying compositions, but at the same time I wonder if it’s too much. I know that some form of structure needs to happen, and I’m not sure if I should just tighten up on my images or use the same format when creating their titles. The feedback I received on the blog was pretty helpful; if I make my images based on my titles, then I won’t have to worry about the series being too disconnected. The problem is that I also enjoy shooting with no image in mind, and when a photograph is created out of purely aesthetic decisions, I know that it can communicate in a powerful way.


  1. I was randomly perusing the blogs.. using that NEXT BLOG button we spoke of earlier, and this one appeared. Perhaps by fate.. but I thoroughly enjoyed it, I started to read each essay included, and found this one just lovely. It speaks briefly on the function of titles and the ways they shape our view of what a photo is of, perhaps it would be useful to you... don't feel cheated, I told Patrick to look at it to, I feel like it could apply to the both of you. This is the blog..
    This is the specific reading, Ch. 9- HOW TO DO THINGS WITH PICTURES from William J Mitchell's The Reconfigured Eye: Visual Truth in the Post-Photographic Era (Cambridge: MIT Press, 1994).

  2. Wow. That essay really broke it down, thanks Ashleigh !