Friday, March 12, 2010

Mind in the Gutter

This shot was my 365 photo for yesterday, March 11, 2010.

This project has been tough and there are days/nights where I have absolutely no idea how I'm going to complete the task for the day. Last night on my way out of the house I noticed this soda can laying in the curb by my car. It hadn't been there all week, yet it looked like it'd been there for a year. It was crunched, dirty, rusty in spots and conveyed a general sense of despair. Yeah, us photographers are nuts, we can start sensing feeling in inanimate objects. I was looking at it and the composition it could create within a photo, and I knew I had to shoot it, but I was already running late. So I got in my car and just hoped it would still be there later.

Well, I did my running around for the night and surely enough, when I got back, there was my sad looking little can. It was so lonely looking, just laying there in the gutter like that. I guess it's the mood I've been in lately. Hell, the mood most people have been in lately. But it spoke to me, it had meaning behind it, and it would be a shame not to document how life imitates art, or however that saying goes ;)

The basic idea of how to get the shot I wanted came to be pretty easily (Hey, I guess this project is paying off after all.). But it would require being eye level with the subject. So yeah, there I was at 1AM laying in the street with a camera in my hand and a speedlight flash in the middle of the road, on a corner. Thankfully my street isn't very busy at night or this entry might have a different ending!

I knew that the texture of the gritty can worked perfectly with the rough pavement and the abused looking cement curb. I also knew that the textures played into their respective colors perfectly. The black of the pavement, the bright-yet-faded yellow of the curb, and the once-was-green of the soda can really meshed. It was a dynamic bunch of colors and textures. I purposely hit it with pretty direct, harsh light, to really bring out the gritty textures of the street and the dirt on the can.

I just love how alone and forgotten this looks. It can be seen as a symbol of our throwaway society where we take everything for granted, or it can mean something deeper to anyone who feels like they've been left in the gutter. With the way the world has been lately, I'm sure everyone who looks at this can come up with some way to relate to this poor, forgotten, abused soda can.

Click the image above, or right here, for a full view of the shot.

More soon,

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