Friday, March 25, 2011

What Photos Teach

My relationship with photos is now the most clinical it's ever been. I rarely say 'regular' stuff now like, "where was this taken?," "Who's this in it?," "Where were you when this was taken?" I've lost interest in asking information-finding questions of this nature. And it's fine. I reckon we all graduate to that next level, at some point. I learn a lot of the business of photography on a daily basis. I've come to appreciate how difficult a medium it is and how hard its practitioners have to work for their work to reach as a final point as it needs to before showing.

I tend to say more and more things like, "the chiaro/scurro conflict is strong in this one" or "I'm not sure about the sepia tones in this one," and so forth.

Last night I apparently was in a mood. In my usual way I contradicted the statement by resorting to an oldie but goodie, "No, I'm not! What?!"
"You look like you're in a mood. Like here. He-he-he."
And then I smiled. Because I was shown a photograph of mine that was taken when I was three. I don't know which box it was taken out of but I reckon it was a box.

Apparently, I was mad at something that day. I was playing outside but my parents summoned me for family photos which, of course, I resented. Who wants to experience an interrupted game? Not me, that's for sure. When my play time is messed with, I throw fits. I threw a fit. For family photos, one does one thing as a rule of thumb: One smiles.
Yes, ok, consider this picture.
The quality is not good as it was not scanned right but I wanted to highlight the facial features. One can't hide emotion from the camera.
"Smile, sweetie, smile for the camera," Say the parents.
Apparently, I said, "No! Don't feel like it."
"Smile just for a second."
"Smile and you'll get gelato."
Ok, insert something akin to, "just take the friggin' picture." And it was taken. The face I picked for the picture corresponded with the emotion I was feeling: I was ticked off that I was taken away from the playground.

And I wasn't in a mood anymore. All because of being shown a picture of me when I was three, being in a mood over being removed from the playground against my will. Funny how a photograph can contain so much.


Unknown said...

This "The face I picked for the picture corresponded with the emotion I was feeling: I was ticked off that I was taken away from the playground."
3-year-old Bri taken from the playground against her will? Sacre bleu!
I love photos for the fact that they force me to revisit my past and in a way get in touch with myself.
cute little photo.

Dana said...

Those big little eyes! OMG! So cute!