Tuesday, February 17, 2009

BIRD REDUX



My Porch, West Boylston, Massachusetts 15 February 2009


Yesterday I took prints of this image in both color and B&W to show the photo classes at school. While there was little comment (at first) other than "ECK, dead bird"....or "Poor thing", what I found most interesting how evenly the students took sides with either the color or B&W version. The choices ran about 50/50. And after making their choice, how some switched from one to the other. Again, it was about 50/50. For me, color has always been more representational, and B&W more abstract. In color print, some said the blue feathers were so intense it was hard to look beyond the bird. About the B&W, most talked about the graphics of the image -- those dark lines reinforced by the patches of ice, the bird just another graphic element. I'm not sure what to make of it all....

7 comments:

Gary Nylander said...

I prefer the black and white version better, perhaps because I am biased towards black and white. I find with the B/W version I look at the 'whole image' there is more of a range of texture and detail, with the color image I find the blue feathers of the bird dominates the image, also it doesn't have the same contrast or 'punch' to it, the color image is nice though, it looks like the bird was selectively colored.

pitchertaker said...

Gary: I agree with you, and it was because of the monotoned background that I tried the B&W conversion. Glad I did. I showed both of these prints, side-by-side, to my classes and put the question of color or B&W to them. I got essentially a 50/50 response. This screen shot here in no way evidences the intensity of the blue feathers in the print, and it was that blueness that the students were responding to. One student suggested that the porch board lines and ice patches were like the rhythms of life.....

Dave said...

And the synthetic deck material represents the artificiality of hope?

ESD said...

Okay. Enough about the "rhythms of life." REMOVE THE F***ING DEAD BIRD FROM THE PORCH!!!

Love,
Your family

Gary Nylander said...

nteresting how there was a 50/50 split in response to your bird image from your students, I can imagine that the color bird image in print form would be quite dynamic, but I also imagine that the black and white bird image in print form would also be quite stunning. I like your one student's suggestion of the rhythms of life, its nice when photographs make people think.

pitchertaker said...

Well, Gary, you see what my family thinks.

Dear Family: 'Tis done.

Gary Nylander said...

Its always interesting to read the wide variation of comments.

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