The Erosion of Shadows

Leaf Shadows/'Erosion' - February 2013

Spinach Leaf – February 2013

One thing I love about photography is that the final image rarely meets your expectations. I don’t just mean that familiar sense of dissatisfaction you get with your own work when you feel you have fallen short of your (too-)high hopes for yourself; I mean how the picture you end up with can be ‘about’ something other than what you thought it would be. This doesn’t have to be any deep or profound meaning, but simply the point of focus – the element of the subject or image that draws the eye.

I took this photo at about mid-morning on a lovely, sunny day, one of those gorgeous days in winter when the sun is warm on your skin but the air is fresh and crisp enough to still need your coat and scarf. I liked the way the sun shone through the spinach leaves, illuminating them and bringing out the green vibrancy that lies dormant on a cloudy day. I wanted to capture this vibrancy, imagining an entire frame of beautiful green. That is not what I ended up with. Besides the holes left behind by slugs and snails (and aside from my own technical shortcomings), the expanse of green I had planned has been eaten away by the shadow cast by the leaf just out of shot. I had set out to take a picture ‘about’ light, and instead it is the darkness that catches the eye. But what fun is there to have in always knowing the outcome of things?

Besides, if you squint a bit, I guess it could look interesting…

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2 thoughts on “The Erosion of Shadows

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