I quite like this image, it really sings for me and connects to my soul. It felt Zen, calm and meditative. I felt that all elements fit together in harmony. Unified and Balanced.
Harmony in Design
Each of the flowers play a role in the whole design, none take over and hog the limelight completely. I liken it to life’s areas. Each area in our life needs to be in just the right degree of balance with the rest. None should be hogging all the attention to the detriment of the whole.
Mood and Feeling and Atmosphere
The title of the image The Soul of the Artist, reflects the inner peace and balance that I felt on the day and strive for each day. It is a joyful and gentle reminder to walk towards a more balanced life. In my About page, I have referenced an artist Jan Vincent. Jan has had a major influence in contributing to my freedom of artistic interpretation, carrying over from painting into photography as well. Jan Vincent is a well known Australian watercolour artist and former research editor for the magazine The Australian Artist.
The vase is an intricate patterned stone artwork brought back from an adventure to China a few years ago. It needs simplicity, a wild riot of floral colours in this vase would negate the elegance and grace of wabi sabi it exudes.
I set the still life up in my kitchen, rearranging the vase and flowers multiple times. Finally getting it just right, to my mind. Or rather… in accordance to how it felt within.
Movement and Direction
There is a lovely arched movement from the far left rose to the middle rose, then over to the focal point rose, then back up completes the movement. For a set up still life, it doesn’t have a really ugly contrived stiff tightness to it.
Design The Focal Point
One may initially think the focal flower is the middle rose, but it isn’t. The one to the right of it and just below with the deeper, darker seeds and more definition is the chosen focal point. And, it is in the correct location for a focal point to be in.
Tonal Values Light and Shade
The lighting on the flowers was natural light, I didn’t use a flash. There is a really good range of tonal nuances within the flowers. The overall image as a whole has very good sufficiency of light tone, mid tone and dark tones which helps to give it a strong presence. The deep near black background creates a rich contrast that makes the roses ‘pop’ whereas the mid tone vase stays relatively unobtrusive. Excellent!
Edges on the focal point rose are subtly sharper and the other receding flowers subtly softer. The key word is subtle, for none are super obvious! Just calm and gentle, doing what they need to do. The edges of the leaves were another story. I had to do something about the leaf on the bottom right leading the eye out. Not good. Getting creative… thinking. What can I do now. Hmmm.
Signing the Artwork – The green signature!
I chose the same green as the leaf, so as to be less distracting and more harmonious. The green leaf is a bit too dominant, with its sharp pointy edge.
The ‘y’ (of Riley) curves back into the photograph towards the leaf and rose. This is what you want the viewers’ eye to be led back into the image. If you look, you see the leaf points sharply to the corner edge and right Out of the photograph. We do not want that! Thus my signature came to the rescue and solved the dilemma.
Playing. Having Fun.
Doodling. These are really important things for artists to keep doing! I have to remember not to get too bogged down with deadlines, with work, with duty. Fun is important too! This final image was taken in Sydney in my son’s garden the day my grandson turned 1 year old. I had a play, I doodled about. I liked the end result.