Photography, Text and Video by Rongrong Liu, Copyright 2018
A Macro View of Utensils
As a foodie for years, my approach to this still life assignment started with the thought of taking pictures of food settings. However, an insufficiency of tableware at home, I shifted my focus to emphasize the auxiliary but inseparable tools, utensils.
Sometimes under the lightsource, the highlight on the edges of spoons can cast a shiny half-eclipse reflection on the table so beautifully that I decided to utilize the reflective property of metals. I began with a single spoon and fork with a black background, but the lonely shadow turned out to be dull, hence I added more and more of them until they overlapped. Under the macro lense, with an f-stop at 2.8, the utensils have an abstract look. It is my first attempt at macro lens photography, and it is the first time I realized the life philosophy “how things look depend on how you look at it” can apply to this series, literally. The abstraction attracted me so much, that I made use of this look to shoot knives and a kitchen strainer. At first glance, it might be hard to see what they are, but once I added a title to the series, the riddle was solved.
I hardly ever took any still life pictures before because I used to think still life is still, everyone at the same spot I am standing can take exactly the same photo, but the one thing I missed is composition. It is true that you can frame a photo with the same still objects, but these ordinary objects that we take for granted can be more than interesting if you actually look “into” them. How things look depend on how you look at it. It’s all about a point of view.
About The Author: Rongrong Liu is a Junior enrolled in the College of the University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2019. To access additional articles by Rongrong Liu, click here: https://tonywardstudio.com/blog/rongrong-liu-looking-at-photographs/