Week 41. Harmony


1.a. An orderly or pleasing combination of elements in a whole:
color harmony; the order and harmony of the universe.
b. A relationship in which various components exist together 
without destroying one another: 
different kinds of fish living in harmony.
c. A relationship characterized by a lack of conflict or by agreement, 
as of opinion or interest: family harmony.

The Origin

The Origin of Harmony … special thanks to the Google Dictionary

A most interesting word.

When you look on Wikipedia, you will see the first and foremost usage today is the musical one. The harmony in music, the sounding together without conflict. A relationship of musical notes in Concord. In agreement. And it is exactly that kind of harmony we wanted to explore when we selected our 52 values at the beginning of the year. Looking for that harmonious state both in the image and the story. The golden ratio bringing perfect harmony to the image.
Not pushing you in the negative space.
Not disrupting.
But guiding you in with ancient number sequences like the Fibonacci spiral.

Fibonacci Spiral

Golden Ratios and Rules of Third

Your eye is naturally attracted by golden ratio’s and the rules of third.
That is why a lot of photographers have a natural eye for composition. We put the horizon on the natural two third, and we know if we want to create a sense of discomfort we create negative space or put the horizon at the bottom of the image.
Breaking the rules makes for interesting storytelling.
But do you push your images to harmony perfection?

Cropping the image to perfection by putting the dominant eye in the final resting position is creating harmony.

And then there is also the harmony in your portfolio, in your storytelling, not just in the single image we produce. A harmonious color palette may be more pleasing to the eye, then a discord set of images thrown together in entropy.

Mens sana in corpore sano

And then there is us.
The human behind the lens.
Living in harmony.
Body and soul.
Work / Life balance.   
Or just not.
Sometimes our creative souls are fueled by a discord.
A drive or a passion fueled by some great unright.
Trying to change for the better.
To get harmony.
And to get balance.
Driving to get it right.
The negative space feeding our yang.

Ying and Yang. The perfect harmony. 

And then there is the brand

Doing a quick google for harmony bumped me into an article talking about the harmony between creatives and brand advertisers. The article started with a dude in a LEGO short, so my creative eye was caught and I read on. Most of the article was geared towards the music industry but it hit a chord. It resonated and it applies equally for us as creative toy photographers.

Rebels with a cause

Are we rebels with a cause. 
Or are we used by Big Inc as (willing) influencers for their brand?
Content providers for an ever-consuming machinery of social media.
Everyone will need to answer that question for themselves.
Some creatives are radical on the opposite side of Big Inc collaborations and don’t want to have their name linked to Mattel, LEGO or Disney.
They on purpose want to fight the IP battle and the establishment.
They are our anti-heroes. 
Some (of the same) Big Inc’s fight the creative world of small art and crafts artists with cease and desist letters if the imagery is not properly licensed and paid upfront through professional channels. Hand-drawn beautiful fan art depicting Stormtroopers and toy photography alike.
Both sides are not in harmony and are out of balance in a way.
The anti-hero with the spray can fighting the establishment, and the Big Inc Suits going after the creatives of the world.

I personally believe (a redundancy, I know) that when both worlds are living in Harmony, great things can be achieved.
Be it your personal ying and yang, or big inc owning their IP while we do our creative thing. In harmony. 

Time for me to get back on track and shoot some of the missing words in my portfolio. 


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5 years ago

Uh-oh, now my mind is feeling caught. I got distracted and missed out quite some words. Note to myself and shame on me. Besides that: this article provides lots of food for thought. I don’t see myself as a rebel (in a way I always was but that’s another story) neither a content provider for social media or BigInc. As soon as I’m posting my next pic on IG or leaving a note on FB I technically am a content provider. But not because I do what some people expect me to do but because I’m choosing to do so.… Read more »

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