Sixth Post: Historic Influences

who / where / when: Julius Shulman, I’m not sure where he took it but I know he was mostly in New York and Los Angeles, taken in 1930.

what: The silhouette of the woman is clearly the focal point of this photo.  He uses rule of thirds horizontally and vertically which makes the photo way more interesting.  The ripples of the ocean and the faint clouds at the top add texture to the photo so it’s not as two-dimensional.  There are some blotches and scratches on the photo which could be some sort of error but I think it adds to the feel of the whole thing.

why: There is no apparently reason this photo was taken (although I did read it optimizes some sort of music that was popular in that area).  The overall emotion of the photo to me is sorrow or longing as the girl is looking out over the ocean in search of something.  Also, black and white photos always seem sadder just because of the colorlessness.

how: The photo was taken film, obviously.  Apparently, he used gelatin silver print.  I tried to read what that means but it was hard to follow, I think basically it’s just the first “photo paper”.  The dark spots on the left of the photo could be from a light leak or a film error.  The scratches could also be something with the film, or possibly a filter.  I know if you put the filter directly over the film scratches can show on the photo.  He probably burned the photo as the woman and the rock are completely dark and the rest of the picture is fairly light.

links: Here is a link to Shulman’s gallery and to his biography.


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