The Proverbial Sunrise

[Who I Am Hates Who I’ve Been – Relient K]

I’ll be posting at least 2 Things on my other (serious) blog very soon.

Today, I was supposed to go with some friends to visit the grave of a beautiful friend taken way too early from a world that needs more love like hers. Unfortunately, I made the selfish mistake of leaving both my assignment and immune system unattended, and now I’m sick and (as you can see in the previous post) still forced to cram out something academic.

The other week, I posted here the results of my photography assignment. I don’t know how obvious it was, but the one of the stove was atrocious. My original plan was doing something else (below), but there was no time for it.

So here is what it could have been.

DSC_0284

Alex.

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Catalyst – Photography Assignment

The following are my 5 photos for submission for Media Objects photography assignment, and the 500-word reflection. I will also be sending the 5 photos to you (my tutors) in a separate email, in case WordPress compresses the photos.

Water

Water

Earth

Earth

Sun

Sun

Love

Love

Heat

Heat

I approached the given theme ‘catalyst’ by reflecting my interpretation of it. For me, catalyst is first and foremost changes in chemistry. This led to me to think about growth and decay – the life cycle of a plant. However, as the project called for still images, and I had a limit of five, I could not do time-lapse – not did I have the time to do so.

I thought about the aspects that affect plants – namely the four elements. I altered ‘air’ to ‘sun’, because sunlight is key in a plant’s growth. For the 5th photo, I borrowed Captain Planet logic, and went with ‘heart’, or rather ‘love’. That is, the loving enjoyment of the fruits of labor – eating. Digestion is also a chemical catalyst.

Water and Earth are simple too approach but hard to execute. At different ends of the spectrum, water and earth respectively are ever moving, and completely stationary.

To capture the fluidity of water, I had to use high shutter speeds to capture the droplets to prevent blur. My main focus as a new photographer was composition and lighting, and I am very proud of this photo as the best of my series, because of the lighting of the water droplets.

I chose to capture a sprout in the soil in order to create a dynamic narrative to a still subject. This was done with a shallow depth of field in order to focus on the sprout. The same idea was behind ‘love’, by focusing on the details of the food items. Weber influenced the composition of these two photos when he said that “the most important part of any picture is a clearly recognized center of (picture) interest” (38), which is why I placed both focal items about one-third away from the edge of frame (86).

Sunlight is difficult for me to capture on camera, due to the fickle nature of light. I opted to show light through shadows instead. I am not happy with the clutter that I left in the photo, and should have removed some items to create a less noisy photo, but composition wise, I chose Weber’s suggestion to use lines as strong compositional guides (68), and used the shadows heavily to lead the eye to the focal point.

Perhaps the worst photo of the lot is ‘fire’, or ‘heat’. The lighting conditions were poor, I did not choose good camera settings for the photo, and the planning wasn’t done, meaning the photo looks amateur. I am quite pleased with how the steam wraps around the handle of the spatula.

Overall, I am happy with 3/5 photos, which I deem to be satisfactory as this was my first time taking photos while putting creative and technical considerations into practise. On my friends’ behest, I shot entirely in a 50mm prime lens in order to force myself to think of composition and positioning more, and I very much appreciate the difference in mindset this makes. On my next project including photography, I will be focusing more on lighting as well as staging a good photo.

References

Weber, Ernst A. Vision, composition and photography. Berlin; New York: de Gruyter, 1980. Pg 36-39; 44-45; 58-59; 68-69; 86-87)

I Wish It Were Us

[Haunting – Anberlin]

I think I used this song already, too.

Anyway, it was brought to my attention that the link on the side for my Uni assignment won’t work unless you’re a logged in member of the subject, so I’ve taken it off (or will, after I finish writing this) and from now on I will just copy/paste what I wrote in this blog, and any comments I will copy/paste to that blog and answer them (as well as answering them here).

I know, it’s so confusing! But I think there will be people who want to see what I wrote.

So yesterday, my post was titled “C’mon lawn chair, look pretty for the camera”

So they reckon (well, Sontag reckons) that whoever is doing/making photographic recording of anything, is the person in power. Those doing the surveillance, those taking the photo, those behind the camera etc, they’re the ones in power because they get to decide and influence how an instance is depicted in photography.

Well, I see your Sontag, and I raise you ungrounded and unresearched rebuttal.

Now, I realize that the majority of those that read this are fellow Arts students, so I might be preaching to the already holy here, but how many times have you tried to take a photo of a lawn chair, wanting it to look freaking awesome and deep, only to have it look like a lawn chair?

I want to be good at photography! Admit it, people who can snap a mean picture are sexier – their skinny jeans, messy hair and don’t-give-a-grapefruit about anything demeanor – and I wanted to be one of them! But each picture that I tried to snap of someone turns out a bit drunk and blurry.

I put to you that it is not the PHOTOGRAPHERS who have the upper-hand, but it is the PHOTOGRAPHEES who hold the power to stand still while still looking good and baring their soul to the lens. You can set up the best shot, and then they decide their hair isn’t sitting right, reach up to fix it, and bam their beautiful face is obstructed by a blurry fleshy appendage. Um. The arm.

Take, for another really boring example, Australia’s Funniest Home Video. You can keep that camera rolling for as long as you want, but if your kid doesn’t throw up in your spouse’s face, or your dog doesn’t get her head stuck in the vase, then you don’t get those two cars! I wonder how many of those prize-winning side splitters have been set up and re-done until they’re exactly the right amount of funny?

Alex.

And, once again…

Alex.

Project 365

I don’t remember if I mentioned it here, but here’s a quick overview of Project 365:

Taken off my Tumblr…of course. I just remembered I’d blogged about it there (I only want to write official stuff on here. And since now this is official…)

I’ve had this laptop for about half a month now, but I’ve decided to start on an interesting day. Thus, I shall start my project on April 1st.

I will display it as a weekly thing. Calendar layout. I don’t know WHERE I’ll display it – I might just make a new page on here first, or put it on Deviant Art, or, dare I say, get a Flickr.

So, let’s hope I can keep this up!

Alex.

P.S. I have added a category: Project 365. That will include maybe a short story about the picture, and what it stands for. I also want to be able to link each photo to the corresponding day here, but I don’t know how I’d do that. Mani, you read this, can you suggest anything?

“But I want to see April DRUNK…!”

You know, I freaking hinted at a photography thing a while back, and unless I wasn’t screening my comments thoroughly (which doesn’t happen) no one bit. So I might as well talk about it here, now.

Granted, I cut my finger earlier today. Slow going.

I chose that line, which Vania said today, because it ties up the 2 things I want to talk about.

First, Sorrento.

Second, photoshoot and party!

It was a bit hectic today, but we finally got Sorrento finalized (actually there is one more step left before we can like solidly and contently be finalized). Now all we have is to pay the bonds, work out costs, transport, and be really really excited! Which I already am! Dec 1st to 4th,  three nights, 4 days, and 12 (hopefully) girls who have finished their high school exams. Yes, for those who are avid followers of my life (and laughs) and those around me, I will be away on the birthday of my beloved Carmaine, so I won’t be able to post a Happy Birthday post personally (I can do a timed post, which is still kinda cool).

(I just realized, upon reading back, that my wording has implied that hopefully the 12 people will be girls, but I’m not sure yet. What I meant was, hopefully there will be 12.)

Now, the way that this ties up with my title…April won’t be very happy that I write this, but, well, honey, you’ll be fine.

April had so bravely said that if we’re over-numbered, she’d be happy to be cut out. Vania immediately switched on her puppy face and shook her head no. “April! You have to come!” cried she.

“No, but I’m just saying if there are too many people…”

“BUT I WANT TO SEE APRIL DRUNK!”

And how does that tie in to the second part?

The 2nd BRuCE photoshoot is happening at a studio! Za-‘s dad is going away, and seeing as he’s a professional photographer, Za-‘s dad came equipped with a professional studio. Dani, of course, remains our beloved photographer.

(Now, I don’t know if I should blog about this 2nd part but I guess if this post suddenly disappears you’ll know why.)

After the photoshoot, it is planned that Za- throws a party. April is attending.

So when Vania did her puppy thing, and shouted her line, April said, “That’s okay, if I don’t come to Sorrento, just come to Za-‘s party and you’ll see.”

Well, I am intensely looking forward to these two occasions. So I will update on the status of Sorrento as it happens, and of the photoshoot assuming I can remember. Ha. No, jokes.

Alex.

Just a few FMLs

Mm, maybe it’s time to share the crap of the world:

Today, my identical twin sister was nice enough to switch classes with me so she could take a test I wasn’t ready for. Since we look so much alike the plan went over well. Until we found out she accidentally wrote her name on top of the paper instead of mine. FML

Today, I went to the dentist to get a hole in my tooth filled. After the dentist had injected the anesthetic into my gums, she realized that none of the electrical equipment were working. She sent me home. My entire right side of my face is completely numb and swollen for no reason. FML

Today, my mum hit me with her car as she was backing out of the drive way, hurting my leg and crushing my bike. For the third time this year. FML

Today, I was walking with my boyfriend down the street and a really hot guy walked past with no shirt on. While distracted by his hardened stomach muscles, I promptly walked into a pole, then became single. FML

Well, I hope you had a few laughs.

Recently there isn’t much happening in my life. Video committee is really trying to pick things up but yeah it’s hard…and SACs and all that are starting to pile up and of course exams are coming. Everyone’s stressed and on edge.

Hope to be able to blog more later when things happen.

Alex.

P.S., did I ever mention about the studio photo-shoot we’ve got planned?

Pictures Of You

Pictures of you
Pictures of me
Remind us all of what we used to be.

Pictures Of You – The Last Goodnight

Yesterday we got our final set of school photos, ever.

In the previous years, receiving school photos usually came with “uh oh, wonder how I looked” and followed by “oh my god my hair is so big! (She-who-will-not-be-named)”. But this year, it was also coupled by the realization that this was our LAST school photos. EVER.

I was looking at our class photo, at the 24 beaming (and 1 slightly smiling Scottish) faces, and I started trying to recall what we all looked like in Year 9. I remember Jen had the douchey expression on her face (look, okay…you had a douche-ier one before) and now she’s grinning gleefully with a row of clean straight teeth, looking, dare I say, like a lady. And there’s Vania, who despite receiving “aww” again, looked infinitely more mature and radiant. And Julia, whose hair was the wonder of all 4 years, was just pleased that her hair looked normal sized (oh oops). I remember one year, it had to have been 2007, when the lady taking the picture said, after Julia walked off, “You have a very sweet smile.” This caused Julia to continue smiling for the next 10 minutes.

I will miss these faces in the years to come. I am actually looking forward to Reunions to see if Jen is still douchey, Vania still adorable, and Julia still maintained her endlessly sexy hair.

D.F.