Emotion

 

For emotion I decided to take pictures of my friends while we were gathered for happy hour at Humphrey’s. Everyone was very animated after a long day of class and work and everyone was ready to let loose and enjoy each others company. In this particular photo, everyone was listening to a threatening voicemail received by Tom (center).

In general, I like the composition of this photo, with the two leaning their heads in and Tom standing tall in the center. However, I wish I had followed the light better since there are some harsh shadows on their faces. In addition, the blue beer bottle in the bottom of the frame is really distracting and I wish I had noticed it before it was too late. Overall, though, I really like this photo. It shows the personalities of my friends very well and displays the fun atmosphere of happy hour and unwinding from a rough day.

Fear of Food

When we were first assigned this project I was at a complete loss for what I wanted to do. It was such an open-ended assignment and we had such a short period of time to do it. I eventually settled on doing eating disorders. I am doing my capstone final project on eating disorders, so it was kind of on the brain.

I had seen a great ad for an eating disorder awareness campaign that I couldn’t get out of my head when trying to think of things to photograph. It was a poster with silverware and a toilet seat where a plate normally would be placed. I knew I couldn’t copy this idea, but it was really hard for me to come up with another idea. Eventually I decided to take a picture of a refrigerator that seems to be looming and take a picture of a person and make them look tiny in comparison.

Technically, I just flattened myself onto my kitchen floor to take the picture of the refrigerator. For the person, I kindly asked my room mate to model for me. I just placed her in front of a plain, white wall. I then uploaded the pictures to photoshop. I put the picture of my room mate onto a transparent background and erased the back as best as I could. I actually commented to my room mate as I was working that having a job as a professional photoshopper would not be my cup of tea. It is so tedious! Anyway, after I saved the photo, I placed it into the photograph with the refrigerator and shrunk her down to size.

I am not too sure how I felt about this assignment. I had a really hard time coming up with a concept in such a short period of time, but I would like to play around with the idea more in the future. Experience with conceptual photography seems like it could be very useful in the future.

Walking along Cherokee Street, I came upon a nostalgic sight that I hadn’t seen in quite some time: a United States postal worker delivering mail on foot. I had actually gone to Cherokee on a different mission, but when I saw this mail carrier out of the corner of my eye, I knew that this was the person I wanted to photograph at work.

I approached him to ask if he minded if I tagged along for a little while on his route and he replied that as long as he didn’t need to pose or anything that it would be alright. I quickly discovered that there wasn’t that much to photograph regarding  a person delivering mail. I had a lot of grandiose ideas of a dog chasing him down the street, but alas, I was not that lucky. I really only ended up needing 20 or so photographs of this man before I had told the story of his job. In addition, I had caught him toward the end of his route, so I had to photograph quickly.

 

I actually really liked this assignment. I chose to put a detail photograph on the blog because it’s my favorite out of the group. When I originally took the photograph, I just wanted to get his US postal badge and the strap of his bag to easily explain what it is he does for a living. But when I looked back at the photograph after I got home, I realized how tattered the strap of his bag is. I think that provides a great detail to this story because it kind of displays how heavy this bag is and how difficult it must be to carry it around on your shoulder day after day in all kinds of weather. I don’t think many people consider that being a mail carrier has difficulties of its own.

My critique for this assignment is that I should have gotten more creative with my angles. However, at the time I really just couldn’t figure out what else I could possibly do! He was just walking down a street and occasionally handing mail to people. Overall, however, I really enjoyed this assignment.

General News

As the whole SLU community knows, during the warmer months Humphrey’s Bar has a band playing on the patio every Wednesday night for “penny pitchers.” This is an event I know all too well; not only do I often frequent pennies, but I can listen to the band quite clearly while in my apartment, pictured in the background of this photograph.

I was planning on going about an hour before they started playing so I could get pictures of the band warming up and setting up their equipment. I also wanted a chance to talk with them and ask them the name of their band and a few other questions. When i heard the sound of an amplified guitar strum from my apartment, I quickly gathered my camera and headed over.

It didn’t take long for me to run out of angles at this venue. I wasn’t allowed to go up on the stage since they were setting up all their equipment and I would get under-foot; trust me, I asked. Since the stage is raised, all my photos were kind of at a weird angle. I decided to climb the steps that lead into the bar and photograph from there and this is the photograph I got.

I really like it because it shows the surrounding environment of this gig and how it’s really just apartments that are about to get blasted out of the city. I think it’s just a really quite photograph that nicely depicts the whole scenario. I think I had been originally metering to the stage only, but did more of a full-scope metering for this shot because I wanted the apartment buildings to show up pretty well.

Overall, I’m pretty happy with my general news assignment. The darkness paired with the bright lights of the stage made for a really great mood. I do wish, however, that I was able to figure out a way to get some different angles to make the shoot more interesting. I mostly just had a lot of photographs of the band members and a bunch of equipment.

Sports

Sports was rather difficult for me because i am one of the least athletic people you will meet. It doesn’t seem like it would matter since I’m not the one playing the sport, I’m just the one photographing it. It seems worth arguing, however, that sports photography is a sport in and of itself.

It may seem far fetched, but think about it…it’s really a very fast paced form of photography. I chose to photograph a dance class and I was constantly running around the room in an attempt to get different angles. It wasn’t uncommon that while I was busy changing angles or doing something as simple and necessary as inhaling, and I would miss a very cool jump or twist or something.

You have milliseconds to capture the moment; if you do something as simple and selfish as inhale some oxygen and you’ve missed your moment for good. This is why I propose the argument that sports photography is a sport, which I have attempted to portray in the photograph below:

In this photograph, our very own Kiki DeBettencourt uses a film camera to take some pictures of her roommate, Maggie, for Maggie’s self-portrait assignment in the film photography class. As you can see in the picture, Kiki has flattened herself upon the ground and is attempting to meter in that fashion. I thought it was kind of fun to capture the strains and hardships that a photographer will go through to get a single photograph.

I really like the angle of this photograph and I like the subtle repeating of the white squares, which is a reflection of the lights off of the wood. i wish, however, that i would have been able to get a little higher for the shot. I was already on my tip-toes and the room, being made for dancing, was completely void of anything I could climb atop.

I wish I would have taken more pictures of Kiki taking pictures. I really liked how this photograph turned out compared to photographs I took of the dance class!

Feature Assignment

For this assignment I went to a tiny doughnut shop called Doughnut Drive-In. The whole “drive-in” part should have been a tip-off that I wouldn’t find a great interior to photograph. In fact, there was absolutely no interior at all. There was really nothing to the place besides walking in and grabbing a doughnut and leaving. I had visions of customers dining in a retro interior enjoying delightfully colorful doughnuts. Luckily, my room mate decided she was craving a sweet and decided to tag along at the last minute. Otherwise I would have had absolutely no one to photograph actually enjoying one of the doughnuts!

 

 

I liked this photo because it shows the coolest feature of the shop, which was the retro sign they have outside. It is the original sign from when it first opened some 60 years ago. I do which this photo had better composition though. I was really only paying attention to getting the entire sign in the picture and forgot to pay attention to anything else in the background. It also would have been cooler if the photos had been taken at a different time of day. In this photo you can see all the shadows (and not in a good way). I would have loved if it was taken at golden hour (sundown version). Especially because I think the sign lights up at night. I might have to go back and try it out again with different lighting to see how it turns out!

Portrait

 

I was really looking forward to this assignment. I’ve always been more attracted to portraits than any other form of photography and I was excited to try my hand at it.

I had at first considered taking photographs of random people that I met that had interesting faces. However, as I thought about it, I decided I wanted to do this assignment about my friends. I’ll be graduating in May and I really wanted to “capture the essence” of those that are closest to me. In this case, one of those closest to me happens to be a dog, Wally.

I’ve decided to share a picture that I took of my friend Rachel. We were hanging out at the clocktower on a beautiful day and I realized that that was the essence of our friendship. So I took a few shots of her.

I really like this photograph because of how in focus her whole face is and how out of focus the background is. I also love this photograph because it perfectly captures her personality. I can practically hear her laugh when I look at this photograph

However, I wish I had gotten the rest of her head into the picture. I think it would have created a more interesting composition. In addition, I wish I would have asked her to take off her sunglasses. I think I forgot at the time that this could be staged and posed. It would have been great to see the laugh in her eyes as well as her mouth.

Overall, I loved this assignment. I think at a different time I would like to experiment with portraits of people with faces that are interesting to me, but at this time portraits of my friends really seemed to suit me best.

Weather

I don’t want to be melodramatic, but this assignment was the bane of my existence. I had all these grand ideas as to what i wanted to photograph, but when I actually got out in the field I found that nobody was really out doing anything I had imagined. So I think my disdain for this assignment partly stemmed from that frustration. The day wasn’t especially sunny and warm, but it wasn’t blustery and cold either. It was just kind of dreary and mild. This did absolutely nothing for my artistic vision and inspiration!

I ended up going for a walk with my friend and her dog. The evening was pretty mild and required only a light jacket and scarf. However, it was pretty cute because her dog, Humphrey Bogart (Bogey), was wearing a little sweater for the outing.

My main issue was that I had a really difficult time photographing in the dark. I don’t understand how anyone ever does it! What’s the secret?! Luckily for me, since I was having so much trouble figuring out the camera, Bogey is very stubborn when it comes to returning inside after a walk. He usually just posts up when he senses that the walk is coming to an end. Since it was such a mild night, Danielle humored Bogey and let him hang out for a bit. She said it was all in the interest of Bogey, but I think she was trying to help me out too. It was obvious that i was struggling and was a wreck. It WASN’T staged though!

Anyway, I need to practice night photography. If done correctly it can be so cool with all the lights and shadows.

Mood

Doing an assignment on light, color, mood, and texture proved to be rather difficult during a week that was so drab and dreary. In an attempt to make the most of the unfortunate circumstances, I decided to spend most of my time at nearby Cafe Ventana. The annex has a great ambiance, lighting, and unique, eccentric furniture.

This photograph, which I chose to represent mood, was my favorite of the assignment. I really like that the photograph bathed in light is the center of focus and everything else in the photograph is underexposed. I achieved this through experimentation with the spot meter.

This assignment really proved to be difficult to me. I think given the right circumstances this assignment could have produced much cooler results for me. As it is, I managed to check out a camera on the drabbest two days of the entire week. I hope to experiment much more in the future with mood, light, and color. I think they all play such an important role in photography and I would like to become better accustomed in working with them.

Always having been a photography enthusiast, it has always been a great source of frustration to me when I have been unable to achieve a photograph that I envisioned in my mind. After a series of disappointments, I began to simply give up on photography as a whole. I am now beginning to realize, however, that with the right technological information there may be hope for me yet!

For my assignment, I decided to challenge myself. I was interested to see if I would be able to take a mundane object and make it interesting enough for 5 unique and engaging photographs. The object I ended up choosing for my project was my bed.  I experimented with every angle and every possible setting within the camera. I tried metering different points in the room, I tried different ISOs, different apertures and shutter speeds. All kinds of things. I actually ended up taking 101 photos of my bed. Who knew it was possible to take so many photos of one object?!

Here is a photo from the shoot:

I really liked this photograph because of the depth of field. I’ve always been intrigued by interesting variations of depth of field, but have never been able to actually achieve the effect in my own photography. I think I enjoy this picture mostly because I’m proud that I was finally able to produce something other than a completely clear and focused photo. I also really like that the shape of a triangle is repeated within the photo: first in the way the green blanket is folded over the bar and second in the corner of the pillow. I’m not sure how other people feel about it, but it’s interesting to my eye.

I really like the light on the white blanket, but I think I would have preferred if the light had been coming from a source directly to the left or right. I feel like this would have provided a more interesting tone and the depth of the creases in the blanket would have been more obvious and appealing. Overall, however, I really enjoyed this assignment and it has inspired me to be more optimistic in my abilities as a photographer.

Megan


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