Photo humour plus a challenge.
As yesterday was a quiet day, I thought I would have a play with some photos for this week’s Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Negative Space. The negative space is the unoccupied space around the positive space, the positive space being the subject of the photo. Now you are a probably thinking that a positive and negative make a negative, and I’m sure this is true in photography too, but overdosing on the negative in photography breaks that rule. You’ll see. In photography, harnessing the divergent properties of positive and negative space can create cohesion – a sense of calm, peace, contemplation, isolation and scale. Distraction and busyness are the enemies of positive. Hence I let these adjectives be my guide in selecting photos for this challenge. Of course, everything is relative and the relative can really complicate the selection process, especially if you have a mind as busy as mine. I’m speaking from experience, or lack thereof.
However, one question remains. Does a negative and a negative (ie. a huge overdose of negative) make a positive? Let’s see where this goes.
I’ve gone for a calm white-on-white theme here. The generous block of white negative space helps to anchor the busy flower.
Unsurprisingly, when I looked through my archive I had a great many bird photos. Surprisingly few of them fit the negative space brief. Here’s a bird photo (or a landscape?) taken by my True Love that fits well with the adjectives of quiet and peaceful.
Now here is a photo I took recently. It has a lot of negative space but there could be two subjects here – the tree branches, which are magnificent in my opinion, and the crimson rosella. However, the branches would be nothing without that bird, don’t you think? So maybe, the two objects are one subject? In other words, two positives make a positive, then the positive and the negative …. My head spins. So I’ll rate this photo as contemplative.
Now you will remember that distraction is the enemy of the negative, or positive, or something like that. Here is a photo of lacewing minus a distraction I edited out after first publishing this article with the distraction included. I’m undecided whether that improves the photo. Gosh, I dislike not being able to make decisions! I guess that is one of the joys of photography. Decisions, decisions.
Now for the landscape photo. It has a lot of
dead negative space. The sky and the few features on the land are relatively nondescript. There is no obvious subject but there is a story. The sense of despair is palpable. The sense of isolation is tangible. That which is missing is the subject.
I do go on. I found this challenge an interesting and worthwhile learning experience. So many photos that I thought might fit the brief, didn’t. Thanks go to Amy for hosting this week’s challenge (see her link at the top of this article) and for her choice of topic. It really made me think.