Experiments On Texture

Texture plays an important role in photography especially in monochromatic detail photographs of objects where, aside from the lines and shapes and color shades in the photo, the texture of the subject’s surfaces is probably the only other factor that contributes to making the photo more exciting.  Of course, how these and other elements such as light and angle/perspective are arranged and/or combined in a photo composition depends a lot on  the style and artistic creativity of the photographer.  I consider myself  a student in this aspect and try to keep these things in mind when I tinker with my camera with a close-up objects on the other side of the lens.  In this blog are three products of such experiments.

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"Banga"

“Banga” / Philippines 2011 [ Eden Nature Park, Davao City] : I was just passing by the main restaurant of Eden Nature Park when I noticed these ornamental jars (“banga” in Filipino).  These jars are hand-crafted from earthen clay, are often intricately designed (notice the flower motif in this group), and are typically used as elements in landscaping and garden arrangements.  This group apparently have been denied that artistic function and allowed to gather moss in one corner of the park.  Nevertheless, I thought that the jars made a good photo composition.  The rounded shapes and domes of the jars complement the squares and octagons of the floor.  The gray dots created by the moss on the jars’ surfaces blend with the grainy exterior of the wall at the background. A soft  morning light emphasizes the curves and round edges.

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"Bayuhan"

“Bayuhan” / Philippines 2011 [Eden Nature Park, Davao City]:  This is actually a top view of a wooden mortar and pestle set (“bayuhan” in Filipino) traditionally used in the Philippines to pound rice and other staples in rural areas.  However, the set in the photo was being used in the park as an ornament in a section that depicts rural Philippine life.  The “bayuhan” is traditionally carved from trunks of big trees (the marks left by the carving chisel in this one are still visible) and the shiny, fibrous texture of the wood in both the mortar and the pestles indicate the sturdiness of the material.

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"Sangkalan"

“Sangkalan” / Philippines 2011 [Santa Cruz, Davao del Sur] :  The “jackwood” (lumber from jackfruit trees) is a favorite material in the Philippines not only for furniture but also for wooden kitchen wares and tools.  The pie-shaped items in this photo are actually chopping boards (“sangkalan” in Filipino).  These were produced by cutting 2-inch thick crosswise slices from the trunk of a jackfruit tree then drying and polishing them to be displayed and sold later as chopping boards.   The smoothly polished surfaces of these chopping boards produced the exciting color shades against the morning sunlight.  Aside from the wood rings, lines appear to radiate from the core of the wood.  I angled the photo to extend the radiating lines from the lower left towards the center of the photo.

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