Another semester of my “Special Projects in Photography” classes is drawing to a close, and I continue to enjoy it. One regular assignment, “Composition”, is presented as a photographic scavenger hunt. We were given three pages of graphic shapes-grids swirls, polka dots, zig zags, and other patterns. Last semester, we were told to team up with a fellow student, go out onto campus and the surrounding neighborhood, find these shapes, photograph them, and present them to the class in slideshow format the following week.
Assignments are good. They instill much needed discipline, and I especially like this type because they force me out of my comfort zone. This morning, I read a quote that reflects my own photographic experience -a photographer said something like “I am not good at being consciously creative”. I think I can make a good photograph, but when I try too hard to be “photographic”, I often fail. I view these composition assignments as exercises, and try to be as spontaneous as possible when shooting. My “finished” work tends to reflect my reality, but I know that I am not going to put these images into a portfolio. I feel free to use camera movement and push the sliders to distort and abstract the images.
We took a few hundred pics that night, my submissions are here.
As Terry Allen would say (http://terryallenartmusic.com/, “It ain’t Art, but it ain’t bad”.