Category - Exposed

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Spoiler Alert!

In my 'Exposed' series of articles I reveal some of the secrets behind how I created my images.  If you don't want to know how I made this image, then STOP reading now!

Come Full Circle - Abstract Art by Jane Trotter

To be frank, there’s probably no great mystery behind this image.

Yes – it’s a slinky.

My husband was having a bit of a tidy-up in his office and came across it hidden at the back of a draw. Not having seen the slinky for years, and somewhat delighted at this long overdue reunion, he played with it for a few minutes and then called me through. “Hey, would you be interested in photographing this?” I poked my head around the door. “Yep”.

Thus began the up-close and personal photo-shoot with a slinky.

I soon discovered the two most difficult aspects of photographing this object were simplifying the shapes, and utilising the repetition to create an image where your eyes were very happy to just casually and lazily ‘roll around’ the curves, and not depart the picture all together!

Lighting played a big part as well. Balancing the lighter parts of the image with the darker shadows, and using these to control where you’re looking and being directed through the image, was not an easy task.

I tried lots of different versions.

Some with the ‘hole’ at the bottom pointing to the left.

And some with the hole at the top, pointing to the right.

I even tried a ‘landscape’ orientation. Here’s the ‘in camera’ shot of “Come Full Circle” presented horizontally.

After much consideration, I finally decided that, for a single image, the hole near the top, pointing to the left was the most effective arrangement which didn’t encourage your eyes to leave the picture prematurely.

Come Full Circle - Abstract Art by Jane Trotter

Then, just for fun, I put on my ‘triptych hat’, and experimented with some multi-panel arrangements. I decided to work with square images and arranged them into a T-Cut, ‘building block’ configuration.

Next came a standard horizontal presentation.

And finally, a diptych (using just the middle and right images from the triptych above) with a cheeky gold colouration.

Notwithstanding a lot of rewarding experimentation, in the end, I came to the conclusion that my single image, with its simple patterns and presentation, was still what I enjoyed looking at the most.

So, here’s to the lucky finds you can make hidden in the back of a draw – may your spring-cleaning uncover equal, inspirational gems!

About the Author

Jane Trotter is an abstract photographer living in Dunedin, New Zealand. Reimagining everyday objects found around the home, Jane transforms them into colourful and dramatic pieces of contemporary art.

Jane Trotter