Self Portraiture and Self Knowledge


Daring Myself  

I’m taking an on-line self portraiture class specificaly for iPhoneographers**
(and anyone else who has a phone with a camera.) This isn’t about learning how to turn your camera around and take random images while_________________. Fill in the blank. This class is about self exploration, along with tricks to setting up the scene/having a steady iPhone, thinking outside the box and having fun!

I’ve read recently where one writer said that, “… writing is thinking…”.  I’d have to agree and, for me, would include making images. I often take images when I’m in certain states of mind and that feeling is often evoked through not only the image but the title I choose. Sometimes, I even think the title is a piece of flash fiction. Quite often a few words or lines of words/sentences are more than enough to convey my thoughts, feelings/emotions and have on several occassions moved me from one psychic/psychological state to another.

Maybe the most important piece in self portraiture work is a tripod. And in the case of an iPhone/smartphone,  an adaptor to affix your camera phone to any standard size tripod.  I purchased the “anycase 2.0” by Anycase through Amazon for $39.95.
A simple piece of hardware that allows me the freedom to compose my shots anywhere. The first week of the course, I was propping my iPhone on books/chairs/tables, until I decided that I would eventually be going outside and wanted to know I could place my iPhone safely and securely.

The first picture you see above was done via propping my iPhone on books. I used my natice camera and one other app, Distressed FX.   I’ve always liked this app, many varied textures, lighting and “feel” and in addition, there’s been a few updates that have vastly improved what you can do, including layering several different filters until the desired effect is found.


She Decided to Simpy Wait

Then, I decided to get adventurous. I love nude photography, but there are many parts of me that I’m not too crazy about (say, from the waste down). I cleared my dining area, set up my books (pre-“anycase”) and found the perfect corner as the afternoon sun rays began shining through our sunroom door. The original is a bit too explicit for my comfort for posting, but after Snapseed for editing and Lo-Mob for the right”noir” style filter/frame/vignette, I think my pose, simply seated with my hands in my lap, conveys the title, “She Decided to Simpy Wait”.


Duncan’s Robe

Next, I got out my tripod and “anycase” adaptor. I was thinking about my Dad, who passed a few years ago. I had one piece of clothing I had always loved, that he had had since he was a young man; this beautiful, heavy paisley silk robe, really a smoking jacket. After playing with different poses, I found my hands naturally holding onto the collars, gently holding the fabric. I wanted the image to have a soft, painterly feel, so I headed to Glaze and chose one of the “rose” filters, then I brought it into Distressed FX and found the look and feel of the filters to convey a sense of caring, gentleness and grace.


Dimensions of Time

Next, I took the tripod outside and into what, out here in the southwest we call an “arroyo”; in this case a wonderful broad expanse of wooded/trailed land seperating one street of houses from another, where folks can walk and bike. I set up the tripod nice and secure angled the iphone on it’s adaptor, going back and forth to set up the shot and used the Time Camera app to get into position and take the picture. I like playing with the concept that we are living in a multidimensional reality and thought layering and juxtaposing the image could convey this. I used Superimpose for merging and resizing the image and, once again brought the image into Distressed FX. I really love the scratched/ethereal feel of it!


 Quiet Deliberation

Coming back into my home and into the bedroom, I set up the tripod low to the ground and found a pose, draping myself off the edge of my bed. Using Time Camera, I created about 10 different renditions of this image ending up with this slightly scratched (Snapseed) and noir feel, once again from Lo-Mob (definitely one of my “go to” apps.) It was late in the day and I had earlier gone to the  inspection for the house we had just gone under contract for. It didn’t turn out so well (not buying the house), and it made me think a lot about the privelage of being able to afford to buy a house…any house.
And so the title, “Quiet Deliberation.”

Oh, enjoy yourself and have fun!

**Susan Tuttle, Artistic iPhoneography:

Please feel free to share your thoughts and any questions you might have!
I appreciate your feedback!

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