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June 27, 2013 - 10 went

June Reading Meeting

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Added by Saundra S.
on Jul 3, 2013.
 

Comments

  • Saundra S.

    This was a cool day at Galveston. I wanted to capture the delicate way this girl was walking through the water without the distractions of facial features; hence, the silhouette. Feedback appreciated.

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  • Scott A

    Well Saundra... I love backlight and silhouettes and I like this image. The light, the action, the water spray, the position of the figure, the mystery of who this person may be in the surf. I do like the contrast of the water but did you darken the figure in post? If so, I think it does look a little bit over done... would like to see a tiny bit of detail in the shadow side (looks totally black with no hint of detail). I might have added a hint more color to the water in post. The image color looks realistic for the light, but I'm partial to color. Just me. :)

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  • Saundra S.

    You make good points. Nope, this is what shooting into the sun did. Some day I will learn Lightroom/Photoshop to add those bits of detail since Iphoto is not that sophisticated. Thank you Scott.

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  • Gary W.

    The idea of ‘reading’ photographs is to consider what is rather than what can or could be. In reading a photograph technique serves only and should be seen only as the way the story of the photograph is constructed. I call it the sentence structure. Approaching the photograph as the preconceived conventions robs the photographer and the photograph of possible authenticity. Or as I frequently mention it homogenizes. Where can this photograph take you as the viewer? What personal experiences, beliefs can you draw from or relate to the photograph? I often mention our attraction to the sea. As land creatures we seem to have a very strong attraction to bodies of water. The waves breaking tells us that we are seeing a young person obviously at this edge of water and land. Splashing calls to mind gaiety, enjoyment, fun, playing. The tilt of the wrists is interesting, feminine, making the figure call to mind skipping along, possibly even dancing. This is not a contemplative figure withdrawn into their own self. This figure is not considering the heaviness of this beckoning of the sea, not lost in some depth of thought. It is definitely a figure that is within the moment, enjoying the experience of the world around them, the wetness of the water, the grittiness of the sand, the breeze, the salt smells. This is a figure that is very outward. The silhouette robs the figure of specificity, making the image more about universality—more representative of rather than talking of the individual. The silhouette allows the reader/viewer to substitute themselves for the figure and thereby relate their personal similar experiences which draws the viewer/reader into the experience of the image. The orientation of the photograph is horizontal. The strong lines of the photograph are horizontal. The figure is vertical, breaking the pattern of horizontal lines, becoming the dot in space, the anomaly of the photograph. All non-essential elements have been removed via point of view, choice of lens, choice of exposure. There is nothing in this photograph that distracts from the image or creates ambiguity in the image. The story of the photograph is not deep or brooding—it is light, lively and full of joy. The question for the photographer is could it be strengthened? Could more color intensify the joyfulness of the image? What would a less darkened figure add to or detract from the story the photographer wants to tell? For instance, would the photograph want to retain the universality of the silhouette or want to make the photograph more about the individual depicted? Does this relate in any way to what Saundra was feeling at the moment of conception or what she latter found during processing? I do not know. It is what I can relate to that her image brings to mind.

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  • Scott A

    Good points Gary, thanks for keeping me on task and emphasizing the point of the exercise. I really appreciate your guidance and will personally try to change the way I evaluate images focused upon here. I do want to restate that I think the image is very nice. Mostly because of the points you made that I just couldn't seem to put into words initially. The joy and carefree feeling of the image is what I most relate to. Thanks for putting it to words.

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  • Gary W.

    Scott, no problem. You do make a good point about the color since a more colorful photograph is generally a happier photograph. Here again that is a decision of the photographer. From Saundra's statement she is interested in the delicacy of the shape, which is where she is putting the emphasis.

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  • Saundra S.

    Thanks to both of you. You get it. This really encourages me to dig a little deeper whether I am behind the camera or reading a photograph captured by someone else. I also realize a greater degree of vulnerability on my part will only strengthen my images. This was a cold windy day at Galveston - not a perfect warm summer day at the beach with tropical blue/green waves. I can relate to this little girl who did not let the weather ruin a day at the beach. She threw caution to the wind and danced through the water. She does not need a face because she is all of us at one time or another. And yes their is a harshness to the shadow in contrast to the feminine form which creates a tension. On a perfect day, a softening could have given more of a whimsical feel to the photo. This is an area to be explored on another day.

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