A study about art and painting. And distraction. Or inspiration.
Or, a story about an artist and his canvas. And an elusive subject. Or his muse.
This is all about focus and frame. Foregrounds and backgrounds. Colors and shades. Proportions and perspectives. Colors and planes, gradients and intersections.
The photo itself is a frame. A frame of frames. Orthogonic frames at that. All lines and grain. Even the lights.
And so close to life. Almost alive, if only but its intricacies and our own projection.
But its dead and sterile. All lines and coarse grain.
All but for her.
All curves and silk. Colors defined and smooth. Shades and shapes that talk of continuity and not asperity. A flawlessness tribute to life.
And she not only eludes the primary frame but the entire lattice of them.
She is remarkably unconcerned by them. By the artist's efforts to frame her?
She isn't the subject (or the object for that matter) of the photo. She just makes sure we properly focus. Or rather, we step back. Is this why the author requested she posed in symmetry to the curve of the wall on the opposite side? That wouldn't surprise me in the least. Is this also why the photographer voluntarily expanded the right side to include a curved arch as is response?
This is a testimony to the artist's unending search for perfection.
A masterpiece if it were. And I am not overly fond of this art, finding it often coarse and prone to overindulgency. Again, it's almost a painting, which may explain that. In a way close to Fernand Leger in its use of frames and color gradients, but in a class of its own.
I hope Randall Hobbet will not find this critique too lame or convoluted. Lacking essentials in beauty and aesthetics yet superfluous on intents. I hope to dispel all such by simply stating I love paintings and woman, simplicity and subtility. And this is a masterpiece.
You do me great honor with that beautifully written critique beautyliesintheeye; not so much a critique as a marvelously laudatory and keen dissection of the image.And so French with your eloquence and love of words! It is especially gratifying how sensitive you are to the elements you describe so succinctly in your second paragraph, and their relationship to the model as you describe in your fourth paragraph.
It's interesting the question you pose about her pose... I did request the hipshot (tribhunga) pose, but had her do it both inflected to the right and to the left. It was not premeditated based on the curve on the wall. Working with a model for me is more a process of discovery and it goes on after the shoot as well. I picked the left-inflected pose because it just intuitively felt right, not consciously because of the wall curve, but maybe that is why it subconsciously felt right.
Nor did I first crop this image as you see it. I posted it with a tighter crop on my Flickr site (here: www.flickr.com/photos/rdhobbet… ) because of a foolish predilection for square formatting and I was more focused on the loveliness of the model, but after a second or third look, the larger crop was much more satisfying, precisely because of the added framing elements and the weighting of the figure... I love how you describe it as her eluding the frame, not being THE subject matter or object of the image but integrated as a structural element. I almost titled this picture "Caryatid" to emphasize that aspect, but having an indelible memory of an actual visit to the Chandelen temple complex of Khajuraho in central India and seeing the beautiful Surasundari figures parading along the temple friezes (some with very similar poses as she has affected) I named it after that site. The beauty of these Khajuraho figures is renowned as they can be seen in many of the great museum collections of the world.
I think the large crop also brings out the color contrasts better: the earth reds and yellows, the blues, as well as a better balance of the black voids. That all this makes you think of Fernand Leger is very flattering indeed!
So, my thanks and deep appreciation of the time and thought you put into your extraordinary critique. It's what make Deviant Art such a rewarding place to be.