Monday, August 20, 2012

Arranging Nature's Treasures: Still Life

In the Ode to Nature class I'm taking, the first assignment included gathering treasures from nature, arranging them artfully and then photographing them.  I posted my first, basic arrangements in this post.  As I was playing with my treasures, I started combining them in more interesting ways, so they became more akin to a still life series. I really liked the one up top, which involved putting shells inside an empty crab shell. 
I also created a series of four involving a cracked crab shell.  I call the first one "cornucopia."
The next one is titled "pouring."
The third is titled "growing."
And I call the last one "fly away."
Again, I really enjoyed creating these photographs. It is rare for me to "stage" photographs like this, but I think it's something I want to do more often.  I really like the results, and they feel very much like me.  The biggest technical challenge is that the focus really needs to be crisp for them to work out.  The creative challenge is in how you arrange things.  I can see putting them on canvases, postcards, or note cards.  
What do you think of these? Do you have a favorite?  Have you ever created a still life? 

17 comments:

Kokopelli said...

This seems to be a very interesting class. Yes, I created still lives, mostly inicluding shells and sea glass like yours here, but I didn't take photos of most of them, as they are all over my house for decoration and they change every day, as visitors touch them.

Mary B said...

I love the way you have named the collection differently as you have taken the photo from different angles.

Karen said...

What fabulous still life photos. I really, really like what you have done and the pieces you chose to use in your display. Gorgeous x

helena said...

great series and the blue/grey behind is perfect - cornucopia is my favourite but I love to see how different they look at each turn. They would make fabulous cards and also basis for an art journal page

Amy said...

Lovely, and your lighting is excellent. I find lighting and the focus difficult for still life photography.

scrappyjacky said...

They all look so interesting....love the 'growing' one...and the first one would make a great permanent display.

Missus Wookie said...

Like Kokopelli I create still lives which people then play with and touch. I rarely photograph them - and if I do it tends to be in a 'here is the newly cleaned room' or 'it is really the new season look I've changed the decor' reportage rather than artsy. Although I think of creating it as artsy.

Fascinating sounding class and I'm thinking I might do some more still life photography.

Missus Wookie said...
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Cheri said...

The class sounds really interesting and you are fortunate to have such treasures nearby to collect. My collections would not be nearly as pretty! I love sea glass. I think my favorite is the first one.

Sian said...

I do enjoy setting things up to photograph although sometimes my patience gets the better of me. That and the poor light!

It's fun seeing where this class is taking you

Elizabeth said...

I can't possible choose one from all the interesting displays you have made. They are all beautiful.

Irene said...

They all look good. My favorite is the first one. How lucky you are to find these ocean treasures.

heart.hearth.home. said...

I too, like the balance of cornucopia, the first photograph of your collection. I love the way the feather seems to wrap itself around your finds.
I did create a few still life collections for a colour challenge many moons ago. It was great fun I remember.

laurie said...

i love the various colors, shapes and textures in your collection! you have arranged them all in such interesting ways, highlighting the beauty and uniqueness of each piece.

The Mann Fam said...

I love what you are doing with the nature still lifes. I haven't really done anything like that yet I've tinkered just the tiniest bit when taking a picture to get it to look "interesting" in the view finder. You have inspired me to do some creative still life pictures in the near future.

Jeans 'n Tshirt said...

very nice pics and collections!

Gail said...

I really like the cornucopia and fly away ones. I've never done a still life so I was interested in what you said about photographing them.