Friday, April 9, 2010

Friday's Photolife--Not using the whole

I love taking pictures of portions of objects.
Sometimes, less says more.
Would this picture of a girl receiving a facial say more if I showed her whole head? You got that she was hungry, right?
I think we love to fill in what's not there.
That's part of why not using an entire subject is often pleasing in photography. The viewer's mind is not taken for granted.

Application to writing? We don't have to include every detail for the reader to get a scene. If we paint the portion we show well, the reader will see it all and be glad the writer didn't show more than the essential. (This is something I'm working on. I tend to think I have to say everything. I'm going back right now in WIP 1 and eliminating the things that don't need to be said. I can wear a reader out with minutiae. Hopefully, I'll be able to make the right choices.)

Have a great weekend!

16 comments:

Karen Amanda Hooper said...

So true. Some things can never compare to what our mind's eye sees. :) Great pics.

giddymomof6 said...

Ooh... I love the idea of using our imaginations to fill in the rest and just focusing on the the most important parts.

I love your photography! You're so good!

Jenni

JDS said...

That's really difficult to do. I'm always afraid that I'm not giving the reader enough to go off of, but I think in the end I'm beating them over the head with silly details. Good observation.

sarahjayne smythe said...

I love this post. So very true. :)

Alyssa said...

We were actually just talking about this in my Creative Writing class this week. My professor was trying to emphasize that we should trust our readers as intelligent. We don't have to put in every little detail because when you don't, that's what keeps the reader hooked and wanting more. We just have to trust the readers' ability to infer things.

Jessie Oliveros said...

You are so brilliant when you compare your photos to writing. That is so true. I'm learning how much I don't have to say but only imply.

Lady Glamis said...

Ah, so true about not needing ALL the detail! Great pics. :)

L.T. Elliot said...

I've been thinking a lot about that concept lately--subtlety in writing. I don't like to be told everything. I never thought to apply it to photography. Guess that says a lot about how often I take pictures, huh?

lotusgirl said...

Karen, imaginations are the ultimate illustrators.

Jenni, Thanks.

JDS, I have a tendency to think the same thing. It's good to know you do it so you can fix it.

sarahjayne, Thanks.

A, I think it's imperative to treat our readers as intelligent. Otherwise, we're offending them all along the way and boring them, too.

Jessie, Ooooo. I love being called brilliant. I'm learning about not saying too much, too.

Glam, Thanks. You know me and pictures. It's a love affair.

LT, subtlety in writing is an art and can be rather tricky. I think all art it interrelated on some level. I should blog about that.

Candyland said...

Perfectly stated!

Mary Campbell said...

Very good lesson and you didn't say too much. You told us just enough and allowed us to fill in the rest. Great pictures too.

Tess said...

This is something I have never really considered...but, as I look at these photographs, I see the truth in what you are saying. There is an artistry to them that would not be present if the entire flower, face, etc was shown.

How did you know this? Is it intuitive, or have you taken courses?

PJ Hoover said...

Lois, I am just in love with your photos and how you tie them to writing!

Susan R. Mills said...

My first drafts are always filled with too much detail. I have to spend a lot of time weeding it out.

水慧 said...
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Joe Iriarte said...

This is totally a problem of mine. My manuscripts tend to be way too long, and giving too much detail, feeling like I have to spell everything out, is a big reason why.

I'm working on it, but it's a process, neh?