The Assignment: With the recent article in the NY Times Arts section, highlighting Cindy Sherman's return with a new series of photographs showing in NY, my mentor thought to have me try my hand at my own version of a Cindy Sherman self-portrait.
The key for this was that I could NOT look like myself.
So, I wanted to practice taking some photos in this old cat cage we call, "The Zoo." --It worked.-- I fit inside and I set it in place, in my shared garage. Next, I went after the makeup for a clown face and in the midst of clown artistry 101, the black paint on my left eye ran into it and completely turned my eyeball BLACK like INK. This was somewhat worrying and very dramatic and I flushed it immediately. What was left was a smeared mess on the right side of my face, but I liked it. I would keep it for this try at Assignment #10. Also, I was going to wear a black-haired wig, but once I put on my white wig cap, well that was it, that was the choice.
Now in set up, I toyed around with placement of the camera (YES< IT'S DIGITAL) and tripod. Close, far...angled, up above? No, full on, close up face shot and one wonderful hollywood hot light - angled above and to my right. One last thing: POSE. I was not supposed to look like myself in the end, so I puffed my cheeks out a little to give my face a different shape.
The Californian who just moved in and shares the garage was PRETTY confused when he saw me in a cage, with smeared clown make up on, taking my own photo. HA!
>KEEP PORTLAND WEIRD<
WHAT I LEARNED: I needed at least one more hollywood light to add the warm yellow tones Cindy Sherman so easily showed in her colorful clown self-portraits. I had too much daylight. AND, I learned a TON (in a few worried minutes) about face make up. You need better quality makeup when painting around the eyes...more solid creamy stuff. I learned a lot of what I would do differently when next applying makeup to myself -or- a model. And that flushing like I was instructed way back in high school chemistry class WORKS!
check your fixer people!
Once in awhile, well, BAM!