Wednesday, August 17, 2011

2011 12x12 Vancouver Photo Marathon - play by play (Part 2/3)

If long drawn out reading isn't your thing, you'll want to just read my general overview of the 2011 12x12 Vancouver Photo Marathon rather than continue on here ;)

Start from the beginning  Play-by-play Part 1

Theme 5
I hadn’t taken a picture of Reliable yet and it was time for the next theme again: “My greatest wish”.  If nothing else, 12x12 tests your creative, interpretive abilities.  Or maybe that is just my personality to not settle for the obvious.  Maybe that’s my downfall, over complicating things.  Carry on Zach, carry on.

Back to Reliable, my brother and I had actually come up with a great picture that would have taken much too long to gather the props for.  He was adamant that it would make a stellar photo and I was on-board.  I just did not feel I had the time to make it happen.  Back to the thought about timing and yeah, I ended up copping-out big time on this photo.  The uber-idea was to photograph a hammer and a sickle, potentially on a red background for ‘emphasis’.  The idea being they are basic reliable tools in today’s age of electronics which just so happen to have an alternate meaning.
I rolled “My Greatest Wish” around in my head a few times and could not come up with a deeper dramatic photo and ended up representing wanting to win and the desire for more money.  This photo would have made an epic behind the scenes shot: my brother helped out by sitting in the backseat of my car armful of _____ on his lap, camera on the tripod straddling both front seats, me perched beside the camera with a flashlight in hand providing extra lighting.  It must have looked as awkward as it looked =)
Theme 6
Happy to be in a good state (caught up) half way through the marathon… well almost halfway.  Physically feeling alright and honestly felt like “Wow! 5 hours have gone by already??” it didn’t feel like it at all.  Next theme: Odour… say what???  I would love to give the person who thought up this theme a… pat on the back ;)
This was tough, how do you visualize something you can’t see?  There were so many ways, it was tough to choose one.  Wrinkled noses, feet, worn sneakers and socks all rolled through my head, thankfully without the associated smells.  Nothing really grabbed me.
I broke it down, what was odour getting at?  There were good and bad odours.  I had latched onto the bad, what about the good?  I felt I had to convey a base feeling, again, something people could relate to something comforting?  Comforting smells?  I originally thought to photograph the distortion above a BBQ which would have made a great photo.  I’ve tried that photo once before on dSLR and know that it is difficult to do, it would be a big risk/reward photo.  I opted to play it safe and thought of another photo that I would be happy with and hope it comes across right.  A quick check on my brother’s smartphone for a location I knew would work resulted in an uphill hike up Davie St.  The result is obvious from the next behind the scenes shot.

Theme 7
Back to HQ we hiked and just in time for the next theme: Echo.  Immediately waves bouncing off a wall came to mind.  We bolted up Denman for the waterfront along Coal Harbour where I’m sure there are more than a few water fixtures outside the apartments.

As we approached the first few locations where I would get the picture I was imagining, I noticed some fellow marathoners heading the same way.  Then I saw one looking at what appeared to be the same idea.  Hmm… If I knew someone was taking the same picture, I wanted to be a bit more unique… but how?
During this time I paused in a courtyard of sorts in Coal Harbour and decided on simple take on “Echo” that is hopefully interesting.
Theme 8
5pm, this was about the time I had planned to move my car from the very convenient Denman Place Mall Parkade to somewhere where I could escape the fireworks crowds quickly later that night.  We waited for the next theme to be announced:  “Trapped” – window fronts, bars, animals, all flew through my head, as I’m sure many other marathoners.  There was potential for a really interesting photo here.  I decided to move my car first and see what inspiration I could find on the walk back.
I wanted to create a photo of a situation where a subject had no choices, rather than a physical trap.  However, in the midst of moving my car, I was distracted by another photo that came to mind and, likely due to fatigue, just simply forgot about my initial goal and found another photo in close proximity to where I was.

Remaining themes to follow...

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