Things By Simon

Outer Face, Inner Face

AsaMahatTwoFaces600w

This year at the EG conference, one of the many wonderful little bonus experiences for presenters/friends was having a portrait taken by genius photographer Asa Mathat.

It’s interesting to note that the portrait above isn’t photoshopped; what you’re looking at is two exposures on a single virtual negative. Essentially Asa took the first photo, changed position while I changed expression, then took the second photo, superimposing them in-camera without the need for post production.

It took a few attempts to get right, but resulted in a really interesting effect. Mine was actually one of the less creative ones; there are plenty of fascinating examples up at this SmugMug page.

There is a particular reason why I went with those two facial expressions. When the photo was taken, I’d just finished doing my performance at the conference. As usual when performing something new, I’d spent most of the performance projecting a mask of suave confidence over a very worried inner self. This dichotomy had been very much on my mind recently, with many audience conversations similar to those described back in Glorious By-Products of Failure. Hence when Asa explained the multiple exposure concept to me, the internal/external difference was something that resonated quite intensely.

So, if you come and see me do a show, unless it’s something I’ve already done fifty times or so, there is a good chance you’ll be seeing something like the photo above. Looking like the face on the left, feeling like the face on the right.




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