Thursday, January 20, 2011

What Does It Tell?

Have you ever looked at a photo and wonder more about what the photographer was thinking or feeling when the picture was taken than what the subject matter is? Or does the subject matter cause you to create scenarios of what it represents?

I ventured into the journalism business many, many years ago by way of taking photographs with a camera like this one. So I’ve always been intrigued by what’s in a picture. But I must admit, because of all of you (fellow bloggers, especially the writers) I tend to look at all things a little differently than I use to.

Everyone who has read any of my posts lately know we had have more snow in Georgia recently than we normally have. In addition, you know I’m not fond of snow in the first place and so glad to see it go.

Having said that, a friend sent me some snow photos this week that were mostly funny. I don’t know where he found the photos or even if they were taken in Georgia. They were titled “What Southerns do when it snows…” Here’s an example of one of the photos, which I thought was pretty creative.

At the end of the e-mail it read “You know you’ve had enough winter when…” Now this got my attention because after snow being in my yard for a week, I had definitely had enough of it.

Before I share the photo with you, just let me say I’m guessing this photo and the subject matter was done in fun. I have no way of  telling differently but it did get me to thinking the more I looked at it.

Let me share my thoughts, show the photo and then you share your thoughts about it. At first, it was funny - yeah that’s kind of how I felt after not being able to go anyway (cabin fever you know). Then I wondered was the sculptor a fan of mysteries and crime drama. Maybe the ones creating this were big western fans and they were playing out a scene from a movie. Was the sculptor at his (or her) wit’s end and crying out for help. Did the one (or ones) creating this have violent tendencies they were acting out through their creation. All and all, maybe someone just did it to get a second look and a laugh out of everyone who saw it.

Here’s the photo. Tell me what your thoughts are. Can you see
where so many different scenes can play in your mind’s eye just from one photo?

Now before I close, I want to send out two huge THANKS to fellow bloggers Dez @ Hollywood Spy and Carol @ Under the Tiki Hut for presenting me with awards this week.

Dez held his annual Gala Party on Sunday and awarded me the Heart Award. Thanks so much Dez. If you haven’t stopped by his blog, be sure to do so. Dez is always in the
know what the latest happenings in the movie industry sharing posters and video clips of upcoming releases.

Carol presented me with the L’Aussie’s Fair Dinkum Award. If you don’t already stop by Carol’s blog each week, you really should. You are missing out on some great posts if you don’t. Now I’m suppose to
tell what ‘fair dinkum’ means to me.

I cheated and went back to where the award was created. I’ve just recently started visiting L’Aussie’s Writing blog and have found another wonderful blog and blogger. Since the award is created from a real photo, I wanted to link back to Denise explaining about ‘fair dinkum’ and about the photo. To me, it means thoughtful and caring.

Carol passed this on to two bloggers and I'm going to do the same. There are so many wonderful bloggers out there it's hard to select just two. But there are two that quickly come to mind when I think of thoughtful and caring:
Elizabeth @ Mystery Writing is Murder
Margot @ Confessions of a Mystery Novelist...

**Author Terry Dorn was scheduled to guest blog here today but due to unforeseen circumstances wasn't able to. Hopefully we can reschedule his post for a later date.


  1. I don't know if I've ever wondered about a photographer, but I almost always wonder what an artist was thinking when they were sculpting or painting. Perhaps pining for a lover? Worrying about a wart on their foot?

    Who knows?!

  2. I love that pic of the snowman in the noose! And I see what you're saying about how it makes the viewer think of so many different possibilities to do with the photographer or person who made the sculpture.

    Congrats on your awards, definitely well deserved.


  3. Stephanie, paintings to tend to make us wonder more than photographs. Maybe it's because the artist is creating an image and the photographer is capturing an image.

    Jai, it is a photo that makes you think. Thanks for the kind words.

  4. I have to laugh when I hear about snow in the garden for only a week! Go out and enjoy its beauty, I feel like saying!

    Cabin fever is snow for nearly six months! But actually, the world is a softer, lighter and more magical place with snow.

    So, I'm sad when I see that photo... but yes - I can definitely see a murder-mystery author doing it! ;-)

  5. I think that so much in life and art is open to interpretation--and that's what makes it interesting!

    They keep mentioning more snow for next week...ack! Let's hope not.

  6. Great post. I love the sign. What a hoot. Congratulations on the awards. They are right. You have a great blog here.

  7. Love the unassembled snowman sign. That's FUNNY! As for the other one, I think it was probably meant to be funny, but is one of those things that can easily be misinterpreted. It needs a sign or something "I've had enough of snow" to push it back to the humorous side.

  8. I always wonder what made a person capture a picture and sometimes the stories I come up with are a mystery to me.

    Congrats on the awards.

  9. Congratulations on your well deserved AWARD!! woooo hoooo!!

    As for the snowman with the noose? is merely someone who is sick of snow! I would never read any deeper than that. Sometimes people think TOO MUCH about what an artist or a photographer is trying to convey!

    I know when it snows in the South everything comes to a standstill (I have friends in the South) said you are sick of it already and you don't have to deal with it like we do in Michigan. I would make the same snowman and I don't have psycho tendencies (yet lol)

    Sometimes people are too thinned skin too. I grew up with having an Editorial Cartoonist as a father (Ray Osrin, google him) develop a thick skin....FAST

  10. That's a homage to the Calvin and Hobbes Snowman Cartoon Strips.

    You can see more of them here.

    I loved his quirky humor.

    Sorry about all the snow. We're getting another blast from the north, but we'll stay dry this time. Good luck.

  11. I learned photography on that camera and a large portrait camera in high school. a couple of years later I bought a 35mm and still have it. It's my favorite camera. I love photography.

    I think that is so funny--the snowman. Yes, I can see so many different stories.

    Congrats on your awards.

  12. Mason - First, thank you so much for the wonderful award *blush*. I am really honoured. That means a lot to me.

    Now about that snowman? Hmm...well, there are a lot of explanations and stories behind it. As you say, a lot of a picture has to do with the way we interpret the picture. To me (and I'm a mystery writer, so we know where my mind is going), that snowman did something pretty nasty and whoever did that is out for revenge. But all the locals like the murderer; the murderer is "one of them." So they're protecting the criminal... Oh, something cool to think about. Thanks :-).

  13. ladyfi, I don't see how you do it - six months of snow. Guess it's something you have to get use to.

    Elizabeth, I'm keeping my fingers crossed too. I think we've had enough this year. :)

    Lou, thanks for the kind words.

    Vicki, I love the unassembled sign too.

    Dru, thanks. I guess that's the fun part coming up with our own ideas of why a photo was taken.

    Caren, thanks. I'm thinking it was someone just tired of the snow too. I'll check out your Dad, sounds neat.

    Maria, thanks for the link. You're right. Just shows I don't read comic strips like I use too. Hope your weather isn't too bad this time.

    Teresa, another reason we're sisters. :) I took photography in junior high, but we never used the large portrait camera.

    Margot, congratulations on the award, well deserved. The interpretation part is what you guys have caused to go wild in my mind. LOL

  14. I believe those snowmen have visited our gala on Sunday too, but they run away after we've spent all the ice for drinks .... not that we would ever use them for cooling our whiskey!

  15. When I look at a photograph, I usually find my own interpretation rather than wonder about the photographer's thought. To me, the best photos are the everyday ones we come across all the time, the type I use on my blog. Now as for the snowman, I vote no. Snowmen have such charm, and this just doesn't work :/

  16. Congratulations, Mason. SO deserving. I do wonder what artists are trying to communicate, and that includes photographers. So often my words don't even communicate what I intended and it's so much harder with no words - even more open to interpretation.

  17. Congrats on the awards. I think whoever built the snowman or hanging the snowman was trying to be funny. Very original. Whoever saw a snowman before that was being hanged, poor thing. It was either someone with a great sense of humor or someone who was very sad.

  18. The photo reminds me of Calvin & Hobbes. Calvin was always making snowmen and posing them in disturbing positions like that.

  19. Love the sign! The snowman totally reminds me of Calvin & Hobbes and all Calvin's snowman antics... (looks like I'm not the first to think so!)

  20. I, too, thought it looked a bit like Calvin and Hobbes. :P

    Congratulations on the awards!

  21. You deserve the awards!

    Love the pictures. My guess is, that after buying the cheap snow, the creature of the snowman realized his blunder and decided to hang the evidence. LOL
    N. R. Williams, fantasy author

  22. I think Mr. Snowman is just as tired of winter as everyone else and is ready to go home.

  23. I got here late and as I was reading the comments I kept thinking, why isn't anyone mentioning Calvin & Hobbs. That is SO Calvin & Hobbs. Then Maria Z. came through and after that several others. On my bookshelf right now I see at least a half dozen Calvin & Hobbs books. They were great.

  24. Congrats on the awards!

    I would wonder what the photographer was thinking if he had taken the photograph but if he was just taking a picture of what someone else had done to show the wrongness of it, that's different.

    Great post.

  25. Maybe because I used to be an avid amateur photographer (I once opted for a darkroom over a second bathroom), I always wonder about the photographer. Photography, like any art form, is a work of the heart and soul. It's meant to strike an emotional chord in the viewer.

    When I saw this particular photo, however, I, too, thought it was an homage to Calvin & Hobbes.

    Congratulations on the awards!!!

  26. That's funny but sad and scary too. I do wonder about the artist.

  27. Hi Mason .. the first picture is brilliant - whatever bright mind thought about selling snowmen .. but the 2nd - now that is great .. just wonderful .. hang the snowmen .. I just think that is so funny - love it .. and how brilliantly made - let alone the picture: I hope it's real .. because me thinks it is!!

    Congratulations on the awards too ..

    Great post - thank you for sharing .. Hilary

  28. I don't think I've consciously thought about the photographer, when looking at a photo, although after you blogged about it, I did wonder what the photographer was thinking with the 2nd photo.

    CONGRATS on your awards!

  29. Hi Mason .. my Mum was awake .. and she laughed at my descriptions of your two photos .. and said of the snowman - I bet he's hoping for a quick thaw! Lovely to bring her happiness .. thank you! Hilary

  30. Hilary, you made my day. I'm tickled that the photos made your Mum laugh. She definitely gave me a laugh with her comment. Hoping for a quick thaw is perfect for that photo.

  31. That is one unique snowman. Recently my brother posted a photo on Facebook of himself and his son-in-law in bathing suits building a bikini clad snow woman with sunglasses -- they are both "Parrotheads" (aka Jimmy Buffet fans). I thought it was pretty clever.

    Tossing It Out

  32. Apologies for commenting so late. Jan was one bad month for me, and I am still trying to play catch-up.

    The guy who came up with the unfinished snowman is amazing. And to be honest, though I do not approve of violence per se, I can understand the sentiments behind the other


I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.