Wednesday, September 27, 2017

What makes a photo work?

Cafe Black & White wall art
This image is on the wall of the popular plaza coffee shop here.
I don’t tend to be a black-and-white person, so I’ve been trying to figure out why this image appeals to me so much. Of course, with the lamp and the shadows it has a lot of hard-edged, static contrast and the figures themselves are dynamic and rounded. Their black-and-whiteness on a soft yellow background makes them the point of highest contrast so my eye constantly comes back to them.

And, there is something about the way the paint splatters away from the dancers as if their energy is spinning out from them.

It seems like such a simple image but it is turning into a great teacher. I need to go back and study it more. Some people study Picasso; I study coffee shop art. ;-)

Edit:  I went back to an older photo I had taken of this wall art and discovered that the artist is Rodrigo Mariscal. Here's the image without the shadows and his very artistic signature.


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