Last December Denver was cold. Turning my hands over, I felt like something was missing. I realized I had not brought my camera out for a long time. I really freaked out.
I tried to shoot photos outside. However, besides feeling chilly, I had no other senses or inspirations of images. I heard a voice in my heart telling me “You cannot shoot photos only for the sake of shooting photos.” That was true. I really needed to rethink what I really wanted to shoot about and what my purposes of shooting photos were.
I consider photography as a way to discover myself as well as a way to communicate with others. And I always wanted to shoot some self-portraits to reflect my real self and get connected with my body. To finish this project I did not need to go outside, and all I needed was a closet, some pieces of mirrors, some lights and a camera. That’s it.
I found four pieces of IKEA square mirror. I put three of them in one corner of my closet – one at the bottom, one on the left wall, and one on the right wall. A spot light was a good start. I put it at the exact joint point of all three mirror pieces. When I turned it on, the light split into three paths along the junction lines between pieces of mirror. What surprised me were the two extended paths on the wall above the top of mirror. It was just like a pair of rabbit’s ears.
After setting the scene, I used my feet as the main object to represent myself. When I shot photos, what I focused on more were the composition and the balance beauty of the whole image, but it turned out into a totally different issue after I developed and printed them.
Those images are like faces, not like normal human’s faces, but ghosts’ faces. What’s more, not just one ghost face, but have two or even three different looking faces depending on different ways you view it. This really scared me and let me think about the hidden dark sides of human beings.
An apple is another object I used. Through setting the forth piece of mirror at a certain angle, one apple came into a circle of apples. This inspired me to rethink about the definition of space and limitation. If mirror is one way to break the limitation of space, what does it stand for in our real lives?
It was the first time I got shocked by my photos. I have never taken such a long time looking through two rolls of films. Though looking at them does not make me feel comfortable, curiosity leads me to understand that the meaning is the key of photography.
This photo essay Reflection has also been published on Behance. Behance is an online portfolio sharing website.
Click the link below to view this project on Behance, and discover my other photography projects.