Friday, 11 July 2014

conveying emotions in photography - a challenge

This weeks' challenge from The Arcanum, my new on line learning forum, was to take an image that represents an emotion, and process it in different ways to convey different or opposite emotions.

This turned into a grammatical puzzle for me.

The emotion I chose from those offered, was strong.

The image I chose to interpret is shown above; I felt there was the potential to convey strength in the lines of the building that I had captured just beside the Tate Modern on London's Southbank.

I have struggled in my mind with the issue of whether strong is being conveyed as an emotion here; an adjective seems more appropriate. Evoking emotion in the viewer is the key to successful photography, whether it be to remind someone of a place they remember and love, or perhaps to shock or surprise.

Emotional response might be considered to be the X-factor that makes an image special.

I for one, cannot get too excited about the image above. I have interpreted it in three different ways to try and add emotion.

I started with a monochrome conversion and added contrast to 'add' strength.

"Strong" © Caroline Fraser

I then experimented with double exposure and tilt shift effects to soften the image right down and take the strength away.

'Weak' © Caroline Fraser

Finally I reverted to the colour version and abstracted it completely by adding image blur.

'Emotion in motion" © Caroline Fraser

At which point I realised that I had no idea what emotion I was conveying here.............

and one of my cohort kindly and somewhat wryly  suggested the title that I have added above "Emotion in Motion"

Is there emotion in motion?

That all depends on your personal view. We will all interpret every image that we see differently, and that is what makes the world go around.

As an exercise it was certainly fun and thought provoking, and that is what The Arcanum is all about.

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