Self-Portraiture: Take One

I have always been fascinated with the concept of self-portraiture. The concept of choosing how to present yourself to the world is so interesting… How do you photograph yourself? Do you try to tell a story? Convey a theme? Or do you try to find yourself through this medium of artistic expression? I don’t know how to answer any of these questions, nor do I know if those are the appropriate questions to ask in the first place. But regardless, I decided that I’d give self-portraiture a shot.

It happened rather spontaneously… I had gone out to find a quiet spot by the dried-up lake to study. I settled down on an old,┬árickety, lopsided dock and read Sophocles. An hour later, I peeked up from my book and noticed the way the sun’s rays filtered through the leaves and bounced off the grass. It was beautiful.

It was the perfect location and time for a photoshoot, but I was alone, with no one to put in front of the camera. So I wouldn’t lose the beauty of that incredible landscape, I figured I’d do a few self portraits. I didn’t have a tripod with me (actually, I didn’t even bring my tripod to college with me), but the dock had a few truncated pillars here and there that I made use of.

And when I finally got the background I wanted, I realized that self-portraiture would be much more difficult than I had expected. How would I focus my manual analogue film camera? How do I compose the photograph? How the heck do you know how a shot will come out when you can’t even see the subject (i.e. me) through the viewfinder? It was an incredible chore.

In any case, I went to get photos developed a couple days ago and I had quite mixed results. There were several that were unfocused, but some came out alright. I mean, considering that this is my first time doing self portraits, I think that they’re acceptable… I think…

Here are a few:

walk

come sit with me

legs

climb up

[Film.]

Feedback? Hints/tips? Suggestions? Critique?

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~ by thechanster on 4:32 am, Friday, February 6, 2009.

4 Responses to “Self-Portraiture: Take One”

  1. i think they’re beautiful.

    its funny, because at a glance i liked the last the best, but when i went through them again i loved the other three more. the first one looks like you’re a novel character wandering through the woods with the sun at your back : ).

    the second one feels really emotional to me, because your back is turned almost like you’re guarded or keeping to yourself, but then your head is turned slightly (as though you’re in a moment of indecision or contemplation or reaching out to the viewpoint behind you).

    the third one is awesome cuz it highlights the sun the best and your spiffy clothes : ). lol, it’s also always cool to get a person without their face, since the face is where our eyes run to.

    anyway, keep up with the self-portraits!

    hope you’re well

  2. I love the first one, it’s seems incredibly in-the-moment, not calculated and posed (even if it might be).

    The third one is odd. The framing and your clothes make you look ridiculously short, to be quite frank. I can tell where your knees are and where your legs end because of your arms, but it still looks kind of disproportional.

    I think the third one is a good pose, but would be better if you didn’t have the trench coat on, the trench coat kind of blends your figure and makes it rather nonexistent. So it looks kind of confusing.

    Keep it up though, practice makes perfect… at least that’s what they want you to believe. ^.^

  3. ooh these are nice. i LOVE the lighting in the third one, you can see the beams of light! the last one i don’t like as much, but i can’t articulate why. hope you’re having fun!

  4. i love the third one. its quirky, in comparison with the others where you have your whole self in them. its the What The-? picture in a much of more deep and eloquent pictures that just made me happy ^_^

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