This post means a lot to me, and as such, I have no idea where to start. I guess I’ll start with the lighter stuff and go from there.
First of all, current time is 1:40 am, way after my bed time (don’t tell Mom ). I’m not sure why it works this way, but it almost never fails that as the night gets later the inspiration hits harder. That’s part of the reason that I’m writing this right now instead of waiting for the morning. The moment will have left me and I’ll be left writing this from more of a logical standpoint versus an emotional one, and that’s not what this shot is about. I probably won’t even post this until I wake up, but I’d rather finish it now.
I’ve been thinking a lot about Raw Visual Impact lately, where it comes from, what it turns into, and then where it goes, who sees it. It’s a thought process that has been not only frustrating but boggling and illusive. I feel like I’m trying to hold on to smoke with my bare hands, every time I’m close to something solid it slips away. Each answer is unsure, and if it isn’t quickly dismissed it only leads to more questions. Writing it all down has helped.
This is what I’ve come up with so far. Raw Visual Impact is not something that happens when you say “I have a model, we can just walk around and see what happens.” You can definitely get good pictures that way, at least technically. More often though it comes from days, weeks, or months of planning. Hours logged thinking about a shot, how to shoot it, why to shoot it. Scribbles on paper thrown away and idea after idea shot down. If you look at it as an evolution, it starts like a single cell. Yeah it’s kind of cool and interesting, but let’s see it walk over land before we get too excited, right? Some ideas make it, some die off.
It doesn’t matter if you shoot digital, film, paint it, draw it, cut it out or paste it on. Why should it matter that it went through Photoshop? If it turns out exactly the way you imagined it the medium is unimportant. Who cares? That being said, getting carried away with the power of certain software is an easy, easy thing to do. Easy to get caught up in visual fads, to over process, to over color, to under color. I’m all too guilty of that. That’s where my first point comes in handy. When you spend that much time dragging the image around every corner in your head and bouncing it off the walls, you hopefully have a good idea, if not exact, of what you want to get. If that means colors are blown out or only one part of the image has color, fine. As long as the reason isn’t “I saw this somewhere else and think it looks cool when I put it on all of my images.” No sir, don’t give into those sneaky little thoughts, they’re tricky ones.
Lastly, you control who sees your work, at least to a point. I’m putting this on my blog because I want to share this with friends and family, and if any one else finds it that’s fine with me. Some pictures are meant to be kept to yourself, that’s fine. Some are meant to be mailed off to businesses or neighborhoods. What’s important is that you’re not creating something for the sake of Raw Visual Impact, and by that I mean content control! You could get some visual impact by posting certain shots in places no one else wants or expects to see them (which, by the way, is my opinion of why certain model sites are the way they are). In even more, other words, are you getting Raw Visual Impact because you’ve created something deeply personal, or because (for example) you’re a little too comfortable with yourself?
well this whole project has turned into quite the learning process for at least one of us. I’m very proud of this shot. Self portraits can — ironically — show the least sincere version of myself. Generic shot after shot turns out just like the ones that came before it, and little is revealed about me. This shot unburied something that I’ve been battling with for a long time, not my faith but the way I live my life.
Now though I need sleeeeeep