Footprint Pictures · 7 August 2021

Same picture, different post.

I wonder if it is the mind or the picture that makes footprint photographs seem like they are life-size sand sculptures.

I used my own pictures of my own footprints in the sand when I posted my footprints analogy. Which is not to say that my photography is anything to write home about. But no matter how long I look at the picture, it always looks like the sand is piled up like a life-size sculpture. Even though I know it is a relatively deep impression of my own two feet in the sand. It made me think about the brain and photography. And it made me wonder whether it was the brain that just saw the photograph of the impression incorrectly or if the contrast of the photo made it seem to come out of the page.

In reality, I suppose that the effect is a combination of both the brain and the photograph. But it sure seems that it must be mostly the brain. After all, the camera just records what is in front of the lens. It cannot think. Regardless of how much memory it has. Still, the camera records the picture with whatever contrast and lighting we give it based on the camera and its ISO, shutter speed, and aperture settings.

Maybe it is just me. Maybe everybody else sees the impressions in the sand as going down and I am the only one who sees it as looking built up. Maybe I am the only one thinking that the shadows make it look like little castings of my feet rather than impressions in the sand. Maybe I am the only one who sees the picture differently. In which case it would be my brain that is seeing things. It is my brain that sees the picture wrong.

I suppose I could go around and around thinking about this whole thing, but I really just wanted to comment on my own photograph. I thought it was cool the way the picture made it look like I had made perfect life-size sand sculptures of my own two feet. The one shadow at my left heel even makes it look like part of the sand sculpture fell away. It is a great illusion even if it is only in my own mind.

Well, I suppose that is about all I can say about pictures of footprints. Except perhaps that the latest footprint photos that I have taken are the best ones I have taken. The other ones have been such that you could not even tell that they were footprints at all. So I am happy about that. After all, taking pictures is a fun hobby. I enjoy taking what I think are clever or artistic or even just strange pictures. And of course, I like taking pictures of my own feet.

When it comes right down to it, I suppose that it does not matter whether the mind or the picture make footprints in the sand seem like sculptures made of sand. It really just matters that I got two blog posts from the same picture.

© 2021 Michael T. Miyoshi

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