I should start this by noting that I think I might be pushing (or outright fudging) the boundaries of Del Monte Y Mar‘s Tuesdays of Texture photo challenge with my challenge response below. And, as this is my first time joining in this challenge, I’m thinking that I might not be making the best beginning!
The challenge welcomes “image[s] of texture, or the use of a texture,” for the purpose of “sharing a detail of [each participant’s] part of the world.” That description seems to me to indicate that the “texture” in question should be of the natural world – and the challenge responses from last week, posted on the site, ARE all either natural or making heavy use of natural elements (like pyramids made of rocks.)
So my entry below doesn’t really match.
But after some back-and-forth, I decided to go ahead and use it anyway. Partly because it’s too rainy today for me to take my camera out and get an alternate shot, and I really want to participate today! But also because the picture I was thinking of using (which I, obviously, ultimately did decide to use) got me thinking in an interesting way about texture. And I wouldn’t have gone down that little thought path were it not for this challenge. So I sort of want to mark that. I appreciate what the challenge has, through this photo, already taught me! (I’m trying to participate in these blogging challenges, after all, in large part to develop my skills. This thinking about texture has already helped with that.)
So anyway, I took the below picture yesterday. I was playing around with my camera while my son did his homework across from me, and, in playing, ended up with a few offbeat shots: like this one below, which focused on his pencil rather than his face.
But I actually rather like this one. The focus on the pencil makes me really aware that this is a kid, newly back to school, working on his homework. It’s something about the smooth newness of the pencil (which screams “back to school” to me), and also the young skin of his hand, holding it. In other words, it’s the textures that lead my thinking. You don’t need to see his face to know that he’s young, and that he’s not, say, working on a dissertation…that he’s more likely practicing his spelling. (Actually he was doing math – learning the thousands-place and ten-thousands-place and so on. But same difference! Not calculus!!)
I think that’s really interesting – that it’s the textures that gave me the information.
I feel myself challenged, more and more, the more deeply I advance into photography, to find ways to tell stories with my pictures. I don’t think I would have considered the textures in this photo and what story they were telling, were it not for this photo challenge. I might have had the same perception (that the photo was telling a story about youth and back-to-school and so on), but I’m certain I wouldn’t have thought about it critically in terms of texture.
In other words, just playing around with ideas for this challenge got me thinking more analytically about my photo. Which is great! I want to look at my photography from different angles. That can only help me.
So basically, I used this photo challenge in a completely self-serving way, for my own betterment! I will try to do better on that next week – and choose a photo that not only helps me, but that also actually follows the parameters of the challenge more precisely.
But (selfishly), as a photographer, I’m really glad already that I found this challenge. I’m looking forward to continuing to participate!!