Monday, April 6, 2009

Marrying Words to Images

I am getting very interested in the marriage of words and images. Some mediums, like flickr, allow you to take as long as you like to discuss your image. Some people do it with poetry. Some explain the settings of their cameras. Some write stories.

The image to the left was taken at church this past weekend. Kids were doing a "God Rods" presentation -- which involves dance and performance using thin wooden sticks.

They danced to this heart-rending song called "Arise, My Love." It's about God, gently telling Jesus to come back after the crucifixion. I was really weeping at the end of the presentation. (Hey...real men cry, y'know.) I wanted to be able to present something of what I felt using the image and a narrative. So I compensated for the truly horrific white balance in the church and set my shutter speed very slow to capture the motion of the praise the kids were giving. I used Alien Skin's Bokeh to blur the edges and placed the main "character" directly into the upper left Dynamic Point on the Rule of Thirds.

Then I wrote what is below to accent the image:

“So he’s like ‘I’m going to Jerusalem and I am gonna ride through the streets on this way cool donkey, man.’

And I’m all “Cool, dude.”

Then he looks at me and he’s all “But it’s like totally bogus. They are all gonna be waving palm branches and stuff…but in the end they are gonna nail me up on a cross.”

And I’m all “Yeah, whatEVER, dude.”

And he’s all serious like “No. I mean it, dude.”

And I’m like all serious too because he’s like the Absolute Cool Chill Dude, telling people to be nice to each other and love God and stuff.

But he’s all of a sudden looking at me like I am totally stupid.

So I look back at him and I’m like all “Really? Like they are really gonna crucify you, dude?”
And he smiles, sort of sad-like and just nods his head.

I’m all “DUDE! If they are gonna do that to you, like DON’T GO!”

And he just keeps smiling and I’m getting all upset and stuff because I think he’s like talking straight and I’m crying and I’m hoping he’s wrong but this dude is like NEVER wrong.

He’s quiet like and when he’s quiet it’s like he’s all about me figuring it out for myself and whatnot. (Which is something I find like TOTALLY irritating most of the time.)

But I can’t like, you know, figure it out and I’m all “Are you nuts, dude? It's a freaking no-brainer. If they are gonna kill you and you know it...DON’T GO!”

He gives me this kind of hug and I’m like totally fried by now and he holds me close and I like (and don’t take this the wrong way, dude) but I like don’t want to let him go because he’s the Total Cool and he looks all of a sudden kinda small in front of all those other people and I sort of want to keep him safe.

And I’m thinking like “Whoa dude…those big hat guys really hate you. I mean they HATE YOU.” And as I am like thinking that, he looks even smaller and he’s never really looked small to me before and I have been hanging with him for like three years now.

So I hug him tighter because I am like “Someone really needs be totally tender to him right now.” And that like kind of breaks my heart some more.

After a while he lets me go and touches my cheek and my heart is all melty and I am crying and I don’t know why and this whole thing like totally sucks.

“Please,” I say. (Now I’m all soft and blubbery.) “Please. Don’t go. We can still get away, dude. Why are you doing this? It’s like totally bogus.”

And he’s all smiling at me and he looks happy which is total and complete whackedness because like the dude is gonna seriously die. And he freaking KNOWS it.

He says “I am doing this because I love YOU…and because I have to.”

So I go "DUDE! You don't have to like do this for ME."

He just smiles all warm at me and walks away. I am thinking that this seriously totally absolutely sucks.

I am standing there like in a total puddle and I think I should like be saying SOMETHING. But I can't think of like a THING to say not even something that would sound kind of lame like "I love you" but wouldn't actually be lame because like...well...I do.

I watch him get onto this donkey and I then watch all the people waving palms and yelling and whatnot, like thousands of them, like he’s some military biggie or something. I'm all like "He knows they are going to kill him in just a few days and he's like totally cool with it."

He looks over his shoulder at me and waves goodbye. Then, like, I totally lose it.

The idea here was to create a juxtaposition that would allow me to add the myriad of feelings I was having to the image. I hope you enjoyed it.

Sheree and I are headed out to the UK with stops in Bermuda, Scotland, England and Ireland in two days. We're in the frenzy of pre-trip bliss.

I am looking forward to wonderful pictures, great people...and a ton of stories to share with you when I get back.

Be well...and Happy Easter to all.

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