Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Photograph Assignment

Bit delaaaayed...

For our first assignment of semester 2, we were asked to swap photographs from someones youth that we did not know very well. Currently half way through Sam Gosling's text “Snoop”, I found that it helped me a great deal in analysing the photos I was given. His book gives you helpful hints on becoming a top class “snooper”, teaching you how to get to know someone through the possessions they own, their body language, and other everyday things that previously I wouldn't have paid much attention to. The girl I exchanged mine with provided me with a number of interesting pictures of her childhood, often pictures of herself and a boy I have assumed is her brother. She looks cheerful in them, but not in a “smile for the camera” kind of way, a genuine happiness and innocence associated with most people's childhoods. Gosling's book teaches us about how to detect the “Big Five” dimensions of personalities. These include openness, extraversion, neuroticism, agreeableness and concientiousness. I'll use his method of analysis to contribute to my own of these photographs.

In the first photograph, The girl is sitting on top of a gate with another person who is standing. The background shows a farm house in the countryside, which may be her house. Both are dressed warmly in jumpers and jackets, and are wearing sensible shoes for the fields. Her hair is very long and blonde and appears to be looked after very well. Both have rosey cheeks, suggesting that they have been running around and have rested at this wooden gate to take a break from playing. She looks about 11 in this picture. The outdoor setting makes me think that she was active as a child, enjoying the outdoors and fresh country air. The second picture is one of her with a middle aged woman who I assume is her Mother. Her mum is in graduation attyr, holding her degree, and the girl is standing next to her smiling mum, gazing off to her right, possibly because someone else is taking a photograph at the same time. I want to ask her what her mum studied at university and where. I think she is probably about 7 or 8 in this photo, and the fact she has chosen this one shows how proud she is of her mum's achievements, and a strong bond between them. So far, it is clear that family life is important to her and I think they are all very close.

The third picture shoes her and a boy, who I've concluded is her brother, sitting on a mechanical bull. They're probably on holiday as both are wearing shorts and displaying sun tanned skin. Both look like they are hysterically laughing, mechanical bulls are good fun after all. She is sitting behind her brother, and this suggests to me that she is the older of the two, and possibly quite protective of her younger brother, showing compassion and loyalty. Family holidays are always some of the happiest memories, and this picture definitely suggests that this is one of her favoured times. In the next photograph, her and her brother are in the back seat of a car in school uniform. The photograph is taken from the front passenger seat and is unformal and lighthearted. Her brother has a big grin on his face, while her smile is quieter. She appears more laid-back than her brother in this picture, again suggesting that she is the older sibling. She is wearing two clasps in her hair, and looks about 10, showing a change in her interest in personal appearance, as with every girl around this age. Both are wearing the same uniform and I've guessed that she is probably in primary 7 here, perhaps her brother in primary 5. her lighthearted expression and hair clasps convey that she is feeling more responsible now that she is a little older, she appears mature and friendly.

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