♪ We’re talking awayA-ha Melody
I don’t know what
I’m to say I’ll say it anyway
Today’s another day to party, but I’m
I’ll be in the corner snacking, okay? ♪
This week, I did something pretty out of character and went to a party! I only knew like 3 people there, so suffice it to say, I was all kinds of awkward and uncomfortable. I thought since I was already feeling weird about being around people, I might as well make the most of the situation and be the creep taking pictures of everyone. That’s right, I chose to do the Visual Assignment, Unsuspecting Friends. My mission, if I chose to accept it, was to:
“Take pictures of your friends at times where they are not aware that you are photographing them. Once you have a few photos put them into some kind of a collage. Make sure your friends are okay with the photo though before you post it. You don’t want to upset anybody. Have fun with this one, I showed my friends and they all got a nice laugh.”
Alright, let’s goooooo, actually, wait. I need to tweak the rules, I think.
Seeing as how I hardly knew anyone at this house shindig, I couldn’t exactly make my photography session 100% unsuspecting. I made sure that it was cool with everyone for me to take pictures throughout the evening. I might be a little weird, but I didn’t want to be stalker weird. (Hey, I just met you, and this is crazy. But photo bomb! So friend me, maybe)? Everyone consented, and pretty soon they all forgot I was even taking pictures, which led to my true objective: candid shots.
Well…almost candid. Some of them were wise to my antics.
After taking a bunch of photos, I then went home and assembled them into Photoshop. I layered photo after photo on top of one another into one big collage. Hmm..but something was missing. I started playing around with the lines and angles of the photos, creating a collage that was starting to take on an abstract feel. I was inspired to play around with angles after I took this one photo that had a distinct frame:
I was inside snacking at the time when my boyfriend excitedly told me that the dogs were on the deck and he needed to step outside to pet them. (Understandable). When I looked outside a little later, I caught a pretty good moment of him with one of the dogs and two people chilling in the back. I hurriedly crouched down to try and capture this perfectly framed moment. Success! I didn’t get a perfectly straight-on shot, but I did get capture it.
Back to Photoshop. I played and played with the lines of this frame, extending it to the rest of the photos. But something was still missing….
A-ha! I needed to get an 80’s Take On this thing.
I stylized all the photos with ‘poster edge’ from the filter gallery. I then duplicated my photos and added a sketch filter to the copies. I erased some of the black & white to let the color from the bottom photos show through. I was inspired to try this technique from watching A-ha’s ‘Take On Me,’ music video, which has a kind of animated, color/black & white combo feel. I was also inspired by 80’s album art such as Siouxsie and the Banshees’s, ‘Once Upon a Time: The Singles,’ which uses a collage of black & white pictures with bright colors over top.
My collage wasn’t quite right yet though, so I added an Exclusion adjustment layer over top to bring out the neon colors and to blend the erasures. Finally, I added a type layer. The final result of my party soirée 80’s mashup:
I like the artistic feel of this piece, and it turned out much differently than I expected. I came into this project thinking it would be a simple photo collage, and it turned into some rad 80’s album art. So needless to say, I’m no longer at odds and ends with photo collages. I’m slowly learning that experimenting is okay. It’s no better to be safe than sorry for a missed art opportunity. ♪