Friday, October 30, 2009


Well it was a cold day to be outside but I did it. The zoo I have never been a huge fan of the zoo buy it is always a neat place to check out and visit. I think some of the highlights of the day were being in the tropical house even though I fogged up because I got some nice soft shots. I also got to go on a bit of a backstage pass because I asked one of the workers were the bison were and he told me they were in the barn. He then took me to the barn to see the bison and get some cool close up shots. Today was a good day I got to see the animals, take some neat shots and be outside in the fresh air even though it was cold. Today made me realize I would like a new lens and I am thinking a telephoto to keep working on interesting shots.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

AT6.2 Photographic Hero

Arno Rafael Minkkinen

I have chosen three prints to look at by Arno Rafael Minkkinen there were all taken in the 1970s. I could not find out what kind of kind of camera Minkkinen used but I am assuming that it was a film camera considering that this was before digital cameras came into the picture. Considering that Minkkinen is an artist I think that he would have developed his own film and developed his own prints. Minkkinen’s work is mainly black and white self-portraits where he finds a way to incorporate his body into the scene he is shooting.

The first print that I am going to look at is a portrait of Sandy Pachaug in 1970. I am assuming because it was taking in 1970 that it was taken on film and developed by Minkkinen himself. This print is of a girl sitting in a canoe with her back facing us. In my opinion I find the print a little over exposed because there is very little detail in her back and the blacks are not as black as they could be. I find there to be an overall grey feel. Which makes the image seem like there is not much contrast as most of the image is in the medium grey range. In terms of the format I like the way the picture was created there is a simple feel to it and the shallow depth of field adds to the image. I find the image grainy but it could be from being scanned and it is hard to tell if there have been touch ups done on the computer. I think the way the image was cropped is perfect there is enough of the background to give meaning to the picture the focus is of the girl and the canoe, I like the softness of the picture and it adds to the subject.

The Second image I am going to look at is a self-portrait taken in Narragansett, Rhode Island in 1973. It is a picture of a dock and Minkkinen is lying on his back with his head to the dock. I think that this picture is exposed perfectly the lights are the right shade as are the blacks. The contrast is good and the picture is cropped very effectively it makes the image strong and bold and the lines on his body mimic the grain in the wood of the dock. The picture is dark at the bottom and lightens up as you follow the lines of the body to the sky. This picture is not as grainy as the first picture I looked at but again that could be attributed to the fact that this print was probably scanned and might have been touched up on the computer. I like this picture it reminds me of a cross by the way the body is perfectly balanced with the edge of the dock.

The third picture I chose to look at is a self-portrait with Daniel, called "The First Noël” it was taken in Andover in 1979. I think that this was again taken on film and developed by him. It is a picture of a baby sitting on the floor looking up; Minkkinen’s legs frame the baby, which creates a frame within a frame. I think that the picture is exposed correctly but in saying that there are some darker areas being the right upper corner. I think that the light is soft in this picture and the baby is exposed correctly as are the legs, which created good contrast between the shades of colour. The edges of the picture are a bit grainy and could be a little out of focus but it is hard to tell as again this picture has been scanned. I like the image it is simple and I like that it is centred because we follow the gaze of the baby up and we are able to imagine what is beyond the frame. I like this picture and the contrast between the soft baby skin and hairy legs adds to the texture.

In general I really like Minkkinen’s work. I have been fortunate enough to see his show when it was at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. As with all of the prints I think in real life they would be a bit grainy but because they have been scanned and have possible had the opportunity to be touched up using the computer. I like his subject matter and the way that he is able to find ways to fit his body into the landscape he is working with. The simplicity in the naked body is reflected in the nature environment. I like the feel of his pictures. I have always liked the look of film and rustic simple feel to all pictures taken with film. I think that because of this it adds to Minkkinen’s prints, as film just seems to enhance the look and feel to his body and nature.

All information and pictures were taken from the following website:

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Composition at Home


Symmetrical Balance


Pattern or Rhythm

Shape or Form


I found this assignment more challenging than 100 ways because I wanted to use the natural light that was outside and I was not able to capture the light inside as easily. I did manage to find some neat ways to look at some of the things I found in the house but at times I needed to give myself pep talks to get going and shoot. I did find that once I got into it, I found it easier to look at the house in a new way. It was a good learning experience and I am glad that I challenged myself to keep at it and I am thinking that when I move I am going to redo this assignment and see what I can find in my new house.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Thursday, October 1, 2009

100 Ways

100 ways. At first when we were asked to pick three objects and shoot them, I was overwhelmed by the thought of having to shoot 100 pics of the same three things. I sucked it up and went into it was an open mind. It was a beautiful afternoon and decided that I needed to take the opportunity to spend some time outside. I took my three objects: mandolin, vase, and lawn chair and set them up under the apple tree. The first 30 pics were easy to shoot because I was looking at this project with fresh eyes, but as I got up to 60-70 pics I was struggling with finding new ways to look at the objects and shoot them differently, so I took a little break laid down in the grass looked up in the sky ate an apple, and got a renewal of energy that made it hard to stop at 100 pictures! I really liked with project and I liked the shots I got, the light was great and the objects I picked really sparkled in the bright sunshine. I think that this project was a great way to look at things differently and I am going to use this idea in the future to give myself a creative break when I have a photography block.