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Archive for the ‘Still Lifes’ Category

Slinkies! (part two)

by Blake Robinson

February 24th, 2011    0 Comments     Add Comment
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I wrote a blog post recently with some pictures of slinkies. If you missed it, you can catch it here. The weather is still pretty drab and I needed a fix of bold colors, so it was back to the slinkies. This was not all just for fun, but also for lighting practice and experimentation. But the fun was the main thing!

The slinkies are indeed fun to shoot. I’m remembering playing with them as a child, trying to get them to walk all the way down a flight of stairs. (I never quite made it – did you?) The colors are fun. And playing around to get some interesting shapes and compositions was a terrific creative exercise.

In the first two images, I used a fairly soft lighting setup. In the one above, I went for a harsh light, to bring out the shadows on the “floor.”  This harsher light also accentuates the three dimensionality of the slinkies. With the slinkies hanging in mid-air, I had to wait a long time for them to stop bouncing.

The one above was also shot with a fairly hard light. As I look at it, there is almost a theatrical lighting feel to the picture. 

How do you respond to these photographs?  (Notice I didn’t ask if you liked them.) I’m fascinated by how each of us responds to visual images.  You may have a positive or negative reaction to each of the colors, based on your own experience and memories. The shapes may conjure up other subjects, consciously or subconsciously.  A psychiatrist could flash these in front of us like a Rorschach test and have a field day! The more abstract a photograph is, the more liberty we give our imaginations to take over.

Which image did you respond to most strongly? What did you feel? What experiences from your life came to mind?  I’d love to hear from you!

And – just as a preview of possible coming attractions….Legos!

slinkies!

It’s been a horrible winter in New England.  Everyone (especially me) is getting cranky. I needed to have some fun.  In a photography magazine, I’d seen some neat images of slinkies, so off to the toy store I went.

In this shoot, I really was just having fun.  The colors and shapes took over. Childhood memories came back. The colorful new plastic slinkies may be even better than the old metal ones I grew up with – who knows? 

There’s more snow, sleet, ran and cold today and tomorrow. But these images brought me a bit of joy and the faith that Spring will eventually come. And I hope they’ll bring you the same joy and faith as well!

1940’s glamour headshot

Faithful readers will recognized Tori – a friend and a wonderful model I’ve worked with before, for example here.  In this shoot, we were going for a 1940’s glamour look – think Hollywood publicity still for a movie star.

A couple of notes about the image.

I used just one small light, about 5 feet to camera left and aimed down from above. This gives a very high contrast and dramatic look. I converted the image to black and white with a special software, Nik Silver Efex Pro, which provides a film-style effect to a digital image. Finally, I cropped the image as a perfect square. The square crop isn’t used much today, but it’s a classic and goes well, I believe, with the feeling of this picture.

As always, your comments and questions are welcome.