Today to the Welcome the New Pediatric Surgery Fellow, a good deal more informal than the Graduation (and that, not particularly formal though slacks and nice shirts are de rigour), and lunch on the patio. Weather today provided a fair amount of rain, here at the Ranch first and also during the party there. We had enough of a break to get hog feed stowed and everyone fed for morning rounds, as well as the Buckling Shelter moved and re-set before we left.
And again arrived stylishly late. Very good food, in the manner of the host and hostess' culture and delightful. Enjoyed sitting on the covered patio and watching the rain while eating spiced foods and drinking excellent fruit punch. Ate enough, in fact, to make it potentially a moot point about needing dinner this evening. Came home to nap. Now. Been up from nap for a bit, and still sedentary even though it's about time to head out for Evening Rounds. Quite simply, enjoying the flavours and blends still, and digesting. Ahhhhh.
Quite a bit learned in the creation of these two commissions. In the first case, improving skills and knowledge with the GIMP application, generating a composite piece (the collage Portraits of A), albeit a fairly simple composite. Simple in the sense that as a collage of stacked photographs, there is no need to match lighting and blend images into a single coherent final 1000 Words. At the same time, the manipulations of each image, coming into the composite as a new layer and then worked within to match the concept for the stacked collection includes skills needed to achieve a blended single coherent final image.
As a composite of stacked photographs, it becomes a short story, a shade more than 1000 words, about the progress through two intense years of Pediatric Surgery fellowship. As one of the Pediatric Surgeons said in yesterday's presentations, four years work experience compressed into two. The short story then includes most all of the O.R. team that worked with A through those years.
The second commission proved a lot more straight forward photographic manipulation, simply making sure that the final image presented in sharp focus, and removing enough 'white space' to keep the viewer focused on the two primary subjects. In this case the white space is actually black, and area outside the starkly lit pair who are performing the title actions, ECMO Cannulation.
A portrait is a portrayal of the individual (or individuals) in the image, in the proverbial 1000 Words. The 1000 words here is that sometimes, indeed, Mohammed goes to the Mountain and the needed surgical procedure is performed where the patient is, elsewhere than the surgical theatre because that patient is in no condition to travel. The conditions may be less than ideal, and yet the care provided, the attention to details and asepsis all comes together to provide successful outcomes.
What the second image brought to the learning desk (along with the first commission) is in the realm of printing. I discussed that previously, and it still proves worthy to mention it again.
Making a photograph is only part of the equation. There are many photographers who capture the photograph then hire someone to print their work; this set of artists includes me, both for silver emulsion printing and digital work. Septic tanks and silver do not mix well, and as for the past ten years or so, with the move to a digital work concept, I've been taking my work to a local lab. I'm fortunate to be in close proximity to a good lab, not needing to send work away and pay for shipping as well.
However, I miss the craft, the follow-through and in essence full control over the outcome of visualising something and carrying it to print that part and parcel of printing ones own work. Printing the image is, for me by both education and philosophy not so much a separate function as the completion of visualisation.
I'm quite happy so far with the Epson Artisan 50. The largest prints I can generate are likely 8x10. I may be able to edge up on that to 8x14, we shall see. I've some thoughts on that, essentially trimming larger sheets to the width that this printer can handle. Larger prints than that will still need to go off to the lab for now. In the next year or two I should like to get a wide-format printer, yes, and there will still be top end size limits on what I shall print here. Really big prints will need to go to the lab.
Right now, it's time to head out for Evening Rounds. The Bros are waiting. So shall further exploration of printing, including some concepts for resuming silver emulsion printing here at Studio.
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