Photo Challenge 2016 – Week 8: Self Portrait

Photo Challenge 2016 – Week 8: Self Portrait

Diane Arbus did it. Vivian Maier did it. Nan Goldin did it.

Selfies are not the artefacts of our smartphone addicted, social media orientated, narcisstic selves; they are as old as photography itself.

 

When you browse the web for images of iconic photographers you will inevitably stumble upon pictures that were made by them. Self portraits, like nowadays, were often taken in front of mirrors. But while their amateurish looks still bore the artistic spirit, the self portraits of the selfie-generation are usually just that, a bore.

 

The now famous Vivian Maier thankfully loved to play with her reflection so that a range of self portraits of the mysterious artist exist. A more shadowy way of picturing herself was used by Ilse Bing. Her famous self portraits show her shadow – next to her dogs. (See My Shadow with Dog “Schubi”, 1948; and Self portrait with Staccato, 1967.)

 

And while “shadows” and “dogs” are doubtless great themes for a challenge, this week’s challenge is all about self portraits as opposed to your everyday selfie. So grab your phone or camera and find a way to stage yourself.

 

Instead of giving you sample images, we would like to recommend following book as an inspirational guide:

 

Vivian Maier - Self-Portraits, Edited by John Maloof, powerHouse Books, 2013
Vivian Maier – Self-Portraits, Edited by John Maloof, powerHouse Books, 2013