And this I did for seven long nights — every night just at midnight — but I found the eye always closed; and so it was impossible to do the work; for it was not the old man who vexed me, but his Evil Eye.Poe, the The Tell-Tale Heart
The leaves of the California Spicebush (above) have blemishes that look like an “evil eye”. And since it’s Halloween, I do recommend the short story by Edgar Allan Poe, The Tell Tale Heart, about a crime instigated by an “evil eye” (link above in the quote).
This is the fourth post about my project “Folhas Secas”, photographing dry leaves in black and white. My previous posts, where I share my vision for this project, my process and my set up, are readily accessible if you click on the category above “Working in projects”.
This project is far from over, but i want to have a representation of it in my portfolio. I now have about 20 photographs of leaves that I like, and I want to choose a subsample (maybe 10). All photos are high contrast black and white, on dark background, cropped 4X5 or 5X4.
Trimming one’s own work is a painful process. Of course I wish I had access to the opinion of other people. I might be able to get some of my friends to chose between two or three frames, but picking ten out of 20 photos maybe too much to ask. A detached curator would be awesome, but I do not anticipate that I will be selling enough prints of dry leaves to pay for one.
Sometimes, and for some obscure reason, a photo that looks awesome on the computer disappoints in print. Remember that pictures on the screen are lit from behind, whereas on paper, they are lit from the front. This can make a huge difference on the impact of a picture. Also, certain artifacts introduced in post-processing, and which may be difficult to see on the screen, have a way to show in print. Occasionally, it’s the crop that looks weird on paper.
I like to test print a subsample of my project photographs to help me with my choices. Usually, I send the files to a local printer, but this time I used Finerworks.com for some test prints. I ordered a batch of cheap 8X10 Kodak prints that should be sufficient for a quick check. I then display it somewhere on a board I have to look at once in a great while. As a bonus, if you have a compulsive personality, you can spend a lot of time straightening all the photographs on a board like this.
On my next blog post, I will wrap it all up and talk a little more about selecting my flies.
- After I had a set of about 15 pictures, decided to trim my collection to ten files that I will put on my portfolio.
- To help me chose the files, I had some of them printed.
This series of posts is concluded here.