Friday, March 23, 2007


Are We Meant To . . .

I'm still thinking about this whole photograph thing, but in a more philosophical bent today. Are we meant to see ourselves the way others see us? In a similar vein, are we meant to hear ourselves as others hear us? I've been self-conscious about my voice, more so in the past than now, and often wondered why we evolved so that we hear a different voice echoing around in our heads than other people hear coming out of our mouths. Other than clear pools of water, there is not much in nature that reflects us back to ourselves. We've invented mirrors and cameras in order to see ourselves. Perhaps it's unnerving to see photos of ourselves and hear our voices in recordings because we weren't necessarily intended to experience ourselves the way other experience us.

Part of the reason I'm messing with the camera and taking a bunch of photos of myself is to lose that oogy, disembodied feeling that comes from seeing myself. A desensitizing exercise. It's working a bit. And the photos are getting better. A few secrets I've learned for decent photos: 1) Seek kind lighting. 2) Profiles work well. 3) If you've got to do a full-face-forward shot, smile, but don't force it. Have someone make you laugh.

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