White, Blue & Skin

By: Gustav Hoiland

Feb 18 2010

Category: ocean travel, self portrait

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So how was this shot?  It was all done by me, so there was a tripod a timer and plenty of scuttling back and forth. If you saw the perhaps 40 images that preceded this one… well it becomes obvious that it was a long process of trial and error with with some fine tuning near the end of the series.

This is one of those images that BAM! Love it.  Right off the bat there’s something catchy here.  The immense whiteness of it all makes me think of a makeup commercial, where the model is kind of floating in the brilliant brightness.  My figure looks almost pasted into it all, with no shadows cast and very hard edges.

So I’m looking off-frame, pointing to the windows, which really kind of look like eyes that, like mine, are staring off into the distance.  The depth of their frames makes them very directional.  And they’re …well, they look huge compared to me which is due to some playing with distance. It’s a pretty deep space actually, but it’s so hard to see any defined lines in the background that I guess it looks shallow.

My fingertip lines up perfectly with the top-right of both window frames (seriously, take a straight line between’em). It also touches, ever so lightly, the line that forms the corner of the walls in the background – there’s ever so slight a change from off-white to less-off-white.  The nose touches the edge of the frame.  And those contours around my head – that weird white shape surrounding my chin and the smooth curve that leads down the back of my head and into the shoulder.


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