Silhouettes are provocative images. Perhaps its the way they highlight texture while eliminating surface details. But they are great vehicles to give audiences access to abstract ideas.
Susan says, “Access to discussion of many abstract ideas are given through this photo. The first is seeing. What is it that the photographer wanted to see that has drawn him to this exact spot? What was he seeking? Why would it be best seen from here? The second is capturing a perspective. What influences how he sees things he is seeking? What filters and previous experiences have influenced the way he sees the world? Would others see what he sees? Would others be interested or moved by it? Because this photo is a silhouette, we are able to put more of our own viewpoint into it. Our minds are not cluttered with the details giving us more leeway to hatch our own ideas about the man, the grass and the clouds.”
Lucia says, “Let’s step back a little and look at this from my perspective as a photographer. If I had used camera settings to make the photographer on the cliff visible, this photo would have had an entirely different feel. It would have been somewhat interesting, but not very compelling. I could take in the whole scene with my naked eye. And to be honest there wasn’t much to it. But I noticed the guy was situated in a break in the tall grass – a perfect spot to define him as a shape. I couldn’t resist creating a silhouette to capture the shapes against the cloud filled sky. Now, as you can see from what Susan said, we have something to talk about. In this instant, the first abstract idea came from a seeing an opportunity to create a dramatic effect from an ordinary scene.”
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