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Gallery 1 shows three manipulations of the basic self-portrait image (Gallery 2 below).

Gallery 1 image manipulation

To achieve this effect a software ‘plug in’ was utilised (Batdorff, 2013) – ‘Analog Efex Pro 2, Multilens’. This software provided many options for splitting an image into different panels, vertically and horizontally — the option I preferred was three vertical panels. Within each panel the image could be zoomed, moved laterally and rotated. The border on the panels could be black (image ‘_2151227 multi 3’), white or absent (image ‘_2151227 multi 1’ and ‘_2151227 multi 2’).

The leftmost panel in image ‘_2151227 multi 2’ is zoomed and rotated, as is the rightmost in ‘_2151227 multi 3’, the latter resulting in a pleasing alignment. Most of the panels are zoomed except in ‘_2151227 multi 1’ where none are.

However, I finally rejected the idea of manipulating the self-portrait in this manner because in the un-manipulated version (Gallery 2 below) the black circle of the camera lens somehow holds the centre. Thus, as well as thoughts on the ‘self’ as discussed previously, contemplation of the photograph leads perhaps to thoughts on the photographic process itself, mirrors in general and self-portraiture; further, within the various convex mirrors the black, featureless circular lens of the camera appears to be drawing everything into itself leading to the distortion of reality seen by the viewer.

Gallery 2 un-manipulated self-portrait

References

Batdorff, John (2013) Plug In with KIK. A Photographer’s Guide to Creating Dynamic Images with Nik Software. San Francisco, Peachpit

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