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Self Portrait

Friday, October 06, 2017

I have an assignment for the photography course: create a photo that is a self portrait.

I could just use the remote control on the camera and stand in front of a mirror - brought outside to the yard - with trees in the background, then take the photo. It would be straightforward, would let the viewer know that I like the out of doors, and would show everyone what I look like.

For this course, however, I need to take it up to a higher level.

First off, I don't have to show anyone what I look like in this self portrait. The instructor show us several examples of his own. They were vague figures, shadowy, and barely recognizable as being a person-- forget about showing you what he looks like.

On my FaceBook page, I have a photo of my face hidden behind a camera. I don't want to have my face on FaceBook anyway.

So, the question is - what do I want in this photo?

If it were truly going to represent me -- the whole me-- I would want to place myself in a circle, surrounded by my family and my friends. That's not going to happen, though.

The background setting could be either in the woods, by a pond or lake, or on a farm. Perhaps at the beach. Those are my favorites.

I could show my eyes, because I am an observer, and a visual learner.

My hands might be in the photo, because to me they represent work, industry, or accomplishment. My hands, of course, would also show that I am old. They have looked like my grandmother's hands for several years now.

It could also be a photo taken behind the steering wheel of a car, with my eyes showing in the rear view mirror. I drive a lot. (So does my husband.) We both come from families where taking a Sunday drive was a regular form of entertainment. We love driving, and have driven down the entire length of both the east and west coasts of this country, as well as two trips across the middle of the country.

Truly, no self portrait would be complete without some technology because it plays such a dominant role in my every day life: a laptop, a keyboard, a cell phone.

Less is more, though.

This does not have to be a collage representing my life.

Perhaps it should be something simple and more abstract.

It could be just a reflection in the pond, or a shadow alongside trees.

I will play with it and see what comes.

This is really an interesting exercise to create a visual self portrait.

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