Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Self-Portraits

I've been taking self-portraits lately and as soon as I get my new computer I'll be loading some to Flickr. I find these to be a lot of fun but also quite difficult. On the one hand I love to find creative ways to really "see" and "look at" myself and I'm the best model because I am always available. However, on the other hand, my timing is not always perfect with the self-timer and I find it difficult (sometimes) to meter the light since sometimes it can change when I put myself in the shot. I'm learning still and I'm having a lot of fun doing it. I think it's really important when photographing something, anything, to have something to say. Something relevant.

My favorite self-portrait photographer is Cindy Sherman. Her images are much more than simple self-portraiture - they are social commentary. She turned the camera on herself as a way to make statements about women, art, politics, love and sex.

Here is an excerpt from http://www.cindysherman.com

For a work of art to be considered a portrait, the artist must have intent to portray a specific, actual person. This can be communicated through such techniques as naming a specific person in the title of the work or creating an image in which the physical likeness leads to an emotional individuality unique to a specific person. While these criteria are not the only ways of connoting a portrait, they are just two examples of how Sherman carefully communicates to the viewer that these works are not meant to depict Cindy Sherman the person. By titling each of the photographs "Untitled", as well as numbering them, Sherman depersonalizes the images.

There are also very few clues as to Sherman's personality in the photographs - each one is so unique and ambiguous that the viewer is left with more confusion than clarity over Sherman's true nature. Sherman completed the project three years later, in 1980, when she "ran out of clich├ęs" with which to work. This series gave Sherman much publicity and critical acclaim; she had her first solo show at the nonprofit space, the Kitchen, in New York City. In 1980 Sherman also created a series of what she called "Rear-Screen Projections" in which, similarly to the Film Stills, Sherman dressed up and paraded against a projected slide background.

Here is a collage of some of my humble self-portraits.

of me...by me

1. the woman and the dawn, 2. Before the Sun Rose, 3. Just Me, 4. I May Have Been Dreaming, 5. Suburbia, 6. esta mujer, 7. ...breath out so I can breath you in..., 8. she has something to tell you, 9. The B-Movie Actress and the Villain, 10. this...is...me, 11. The Good Morning, 12. Untitled, 13. Mirame, 14. in the mysterious distance, 15. Hidden Places, 16. not the simple girl..., 17. The Chessas and 100,000 views:), 18. I Love New York