09 November 2009

the photo and the story

As I enter into my seventh week of the year-long self portrait challenge on Flickr, I find myself stretched and challenged, creatively speaking. I'm using my tripod and my remote a lot more, both accessories I've had since I received my Canon 40D, but which I had never used prior to this challenge.

For shame!!

I'm also being challenged in how I choose to process my photos. Sometimes, it's hard to choose which direction to go with a particular photograph. I submit to you the three photos below, from yesterday's self portrait session. Honestly, I could go either way with any of them. When processing, I have to ask myself: What kind of story am I trying to tell? Is there a particular mood I want to evoke?

It's not as though I have to choose which I like better, but it got me to thinking. In the photos below, I honestly could go either way with the photos within these pairings, even though what I feel with each of the photos is markedly different.

46/365: on the tracks

stormy weatherstormy weather (bw)

railroad tracks

I'm curious to know if any one of them speaks more to you than the other. What do you think?


  1. On the first pairing, I like the first photo in black and white. Feels mysterious, like you're going somewhere and daringly asking with your eyes if we will follow. Whereas the colored one feels more intimate, almost like I am intruding on a glance being given to a lover.

    It's interesting ... on the second pairing, I find myself asking the very question you seem to be posing: which story wants to be told? In the black and white, there's a feeling of sturdiness and strength. In the color photo, it feels more tenuous, almost like it's about the humanness and opening to grace. I like both, but they tell totally different stories.

    In the second pairing, I *love* the hues of the second photograph!! I don't have a rational explanation for it, only that I'm really drawn to it.

    It's cool to get a glimpse into your process more. I'm amazed you opened this up for our feedback!

  2. PS: This is probably obvious, but in my comment the *hues* I am talking about the third pairing, not the second. My typo ... oops.

  3. These are all beautiful, indeed!

    I especially love the first two; the black & white photo is so striking! My eyes were immediately wanting to know where you are & where you're going..I took in the whole photo.
    The second one but in color is great~ I love the natural color of it all...I feel like I can feel the weather in it...

    You pull of your curls beautifully!!

  4. The thing that jumps out to me the most is the hair and the eyes. The first two pictures have one eye covered by your hair.

    From there, the difference between the two then becomes your facial expression and post. In the first you have almost a smirk as you're looking back. The second one has you squatting and almost troubled or getting back up from being dragged down from something.

    The third set I'm not sure about. It seems out of sorts from the other two or maybe it is just the order I view them in.

    Regardless, all of them are great pictures. If any of them spoke to me the most, I would say it was the second set, in black in white, because it evokes the most "hmm, what is going on?" type response. After that, it is the first set, in color, since your black jacket against the fall colors helps you stand out more.

    That's my 10 bits. Hope it helps!

  5. In both the first and the third pairings, I like the black and white. I almost feel like there's so much in the background that the colors distract from you, which is what I want to look at.

    In the second paring, on the other hand, I think the colors in the background add to my vision of you.

  6. I like the last pairing where you're pushing your hair out of your face. It implies movement. It also suggests (to me) that there's someone on the other side, someone who's said something and you've turned back to listen to them. Maybe you've been caught slightly off guard. But there's something intentional about pushing your hair out of your face.
    Typically, I like black and white, but I like the way the color works. It's surprising and nuanced.

  7. First pairing: b and w; second pair: color; third: either. Love them ALL, though! Of course you should be photographing your beautiful self. So much poetry in your images!!!!!