Photography, Text and Video by Karen Liao, Copyright 2017
HOMAGE TO TEXTURES
In a world saturated with mostly visual, oral, audio, and olfactory stimulation, it is easy to forget the important, but often silent presence of tactility. I chose to center my photographs around the concept of textures because I myself was recently reminded of the secret superpowers of the tactile sense. Texture is just one aspect of what one can determine through touch; in everyday life, I believe that its presence adds an extra dimension of interest to many things. Let’s picture a simple, striped shirt—what makes it interesting to wear and touch may be that it’s silky, or if it’s furry, or even if it has beaded pearls sewn into the fabric. Texture brings that additional element to an object and can make it both more memorable and enticing.
Through my photographs, I hoped to capture the beauty and importance of textures. I think it is very fascinating that a two-dimensional photograph can encapsulate a three-dimensional aspect of sensory stimulation. This is the idea of visual texture—I love how the right lighting, angles, and settings of camera work can transform tactile texture into a piece of visual texture.
The objects that I chose were simple in structure—with the makeup of circles and rectangles—but could adequately represent important textures. Each object was something that I collected or came across during my time roaming the Philly streets, stores, and Penn campus. I felt the spikiness of a rose thorn, the slickness of the pomegranate, the furriness of my PillowPet, and more. The rough layers of the broken wall were something that I would not have noticed before, but I have come to appreciate it for its intriguing texture. These objects and scenes are put against muted backgrounds, since I wanted to pursue a more vintage style with the collection. I also considered choosing different colored textures for my photos because I wanted an element of eye-catching fun in the collection. Colors, tastes, smells, and sounds in everything around us are all exciting. But cheers to some fun textures—may we never forget about them!
About The Author: Karen Liao is a Junior enrolled in the School of Nursing, University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2019. To access additional articles by Karen Liao, click here: https://tonywardstudio.com/blog/karen-liao-bare/