Photo Essay: My People


I decided that I wanted to take the photo topic and do something without any people. Part of this is it’s hard to coordinate with people, and part of is that I wanted a challenge. I wanted to actually make something that held up to the idea of the class as “storytelling.” The last rule I made for myself is no editing at all. I managed to follow this. It was hard, and I couldn’t really get a shot with decent white balance of the computer screen in the time I had, but I made do.

So I can’t use people other than myself. Where do I go from there? This came from a conversation in the living room of a coop. I had already been thinking about how our stuff can tell us things about ourselves for another project. Then, someone fortuitously mentioned googly eyes and it hit me: I’ll try to humanize objects using googly eyes and tell a story with it. I didn’t have much time available to me, so I decided to try to stretch that concept as far as I could by telling a short story.

I kind of feel bad for the treatment my computer has been getting. A lot of things are broken, and I’m making do for now. In a sense, I guess this is remixing some of toy story and Wall-E. That’s not coincidental. I used pixars 22 guidelines of storytelling to help form my story. In my notebook, I copied down the template for rule #4:

#4: Once upon a time there was ___. Every day, ___. One day ___. Because of that, ___. Because of that, ___. Until finally ___.

I ended up deviating from the original template I made involving a calculator because I didn’t have the books I wanted to use. Telling a story of the main character’s ethical struggle and wondering if he’s going crazy proved to be problematic. Also, writing and drawing on the calculator display isn’t easy. I don’t want to try that again, even though it’s more convenient to white balance.

Seriously, screens mess with white balance. I don’t know my camera well enough to get a decent photo of a screen without using photoshop. Making the no editing rule for myself was a pretty bad idea as you can see in the Sad Apple photo. The screen is ok, everything else is orange. I should have taken a photo of the apple upside down with eyes ontop. However, that came too late. I might take more photos later to fix this down the line, but for now this is the draft that I have to push out.

Googly eyes are amazingly convenient. I would like to use them again in the future. They’re great for humanizing objects, and I might do an entire set with them and oddly shaped objects that have parts resembling mouths. However, I will definitely avoid devices with screens. They’re too much of a hassle to white balance until I learn to match color temperatures better. It’s still hard for me to understand how a scene with complex will look before I take a photo. The LCD display on my camera isn’t very reliable so I have to learn how to predict this.


One thought on “Photo Essay: My People

  1. Just match light temperature either by changing/filtering the light from the bulb and/or adjusting the settings in your screen color temperature panel.
    Also, remember that editing and developing a photo are two different processes. IMO Adjusting highlights, shadows, color temperature are part of the developing process. It’s hard to visualize it if you only work digital, but think of the files from the camera as “positives” (the opposite of negatives in film), you can see the image easily but they still need developing.

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