On Taking Assignments #8 - Diptych

The Diptych assignment was a bit of a departure for me.

I often shoot multiple images in the same area with a similar theme, each able to stand on its own.  I've even gone so far as to display them together, but in those instances the individual photos didn't depend on the other images to deliver their message.  In fact, it was not my goal at all to shoot images that were dependent on other images to communicate.

My goal with this assignment was to shoot multiple photos with the intention of communicating one message from both photos.  In other words the photos individually would not have the same message of the photos together.

My first Diptych above contained pictures that focused on sensory perception.  The patches of color focused on seeing and color as sense.  The picture of the eighth note was meant to suggest hearing and sound.  Each photo can stand alone, but when they are combined they bring the sensory theme into the forefront.

I like the though of seeing music as color or hearing color as music.  Our senses are often intertwined, making them difficult to separate.  There are seven distinct notes played in a major scale before finishing with the last note a repeat of the first, only an octave higher.  There are seven colors in the visible spectrum.

In fact, Isaac Newton correlated colors and music, among other things in his 17th century writings.  Here is a quote from the Wikipedia article on the Visible Spectrum:

"Newton divided the spectrum into seven named colors: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. He chose seven colors out of a belief, derived from the ancient Greek sophists, of there being a connection between the colors, the musical notes, the known objects in the solar system, and the days of the week."

In addition to the senses, I found symbols to be useful in this exercise.  Below is another Diptych from the assignment that conveys something completely different when the images are interpreted together.

This assignment was really interesting and it introduced a new format for presenting my photos that I otherwise would not likely have tried.

On Taking Assignments

I frequently listen to the On Taking Pictures (OTP) podcast, which I highly recommend to anyone looking for good conversation about creativity, especially as it related to photography.  In January 2014 the hosts, Bill Wadman and Jeffery Saddoris, began a new segment of weekly assignments that they gave to listeners.  Results of the assignments are posted on the OTP Google Plus group.  I decided that I would commit myself to the assignments for a year without interruption, and that I would complete each one before the next assignment was announced on the show each Tuesday morning.  My 'On Taking Assignments' blog posts are the culmination of my year-long focus on these assignments.