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Digital Story Telling Material – Reflection

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I have split my reflection into sections based on each of the five required reading links.

  1. Becoming a Better Photographer (section from the ds106 Handbook)

Out of all of the tips listed in this section I liked the “creating depth” tip. By their nature photos rob the subject of its natural three dimensions, but being able to some how capture depth into the photo makes the subject seem all the more alive. I also really liked the “better contrast makes better stories” line. Contrast really does seem to work wonders, it is something I really want to be able to understand fully and work with better. Overall I found this article to be very useful, I have printed out the list of tips and take them with me whenever I go to take photos!

  1. Storytelling & Visual Literacy, Jason Eskenazi (6:36 minute video)

I especially enjoyed watching the video with Jason Eskenazi, specifically I found the statement about photography having a grammar to be very compelling. When he talked about how in the one photo the girl’s feet and the horses hooves looked the same, really got me thinking about the concept of an isomorphism again, the girl’s foot looks different than the horse’s hoof, however at the very basic level they preform the same exact function. So in this instance when they looked the same, they were the same. This piece made we want to approach photography from the perspective of finding more isomorphisms.

  1. The Story Behind. . . Migrant Mother, Maria Popova

I really really found it difficult to get through reading this article. Not only did I find it boring, I found the examples of Lange’s work included in the article to be very drab. Perhaps In this modern world of brightness and color I have been spoiled, having almost all of every visual story spoon-fed to me. I find the stories captured by these images to be nothing of interest. Out of Lange’s work I found the most interesting thing to be her captions, I found her writing to be a very “matter of fact” in style, which I appreciated greatly. As I stated in my photo reflection I have never found black and white photos to be very compelling. This article did make me want to spend more time and attempt to become a more tasteful consumer of the black and white medium.

  1. Learn the ‘Rules’ of Film Noir & How to Light It, Justin Morrow

I had never been a big fan of the Film Noir style until I watched Pulp Fiction. Although the movie isn’t a Film Noir in the strictest sense, it certainly captures many of the main characteristics that Film Noir demands. The main redeeming quality of Film Noir (as the article points out) is the nebulous feel found throughout the entire film. Nothing seems real, or at least you can’t be sure of what is real. In these films your perspective can shift in an instant, and then shift back again. In this respect I find the genre very cool.

I think what I gained most from the article was a more definite understanding of the indefinite. What I mean by this, is that although most of the things in a Film Noir are indefinite (by definition), I now am beginning to  understand the defining properties of a Film Noir. I would really like to apply this properties to my work, especially to garner the “lucid dreamy” quality.

  1. Henri Cartier-Bresson’s Photography (h/t/ July Laszakovits)

My favorite image out of the entire collection was this one:

I think I enjoy the image for two main reasons. I really like birds (I have a Nanday Conure), and I really like the contrast. Out of all of the images, this one spoke to me the most. I think the way the birds are the lightest part of the photo, it makes them pop out at you! This I really enjoy. The cage itself is also interesting to look at, especially because the light is reflecting off of parts of the cage which are creating a highlighting effect! The image also seems to have really nice positioning, I like how none of the main subjects of the image are in the center of the photo, this causes a sense of balance betweem the main and the bird cages.

This collection of photos has again made me want to try my hand at creating black and white photos. I am starting to develop the opinion that to create nice looking black and white photos requires more technical ability than it does to construct colored ones.

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