For this project you have been asked to work with the idea of a visual metaphor. Think of visual metaphors as visual symbolism, where the image symbolizes something else. Choose a poem, snippet of a book or song lyrics to help you envision your imagery. Use Adobe Photoshop to enhance the metaphor you’ve chosen. Your final print will be an 8 x 10 inch single image that expresses the overall metaphor. Go beyond trite (overused) images and associations like love is symbolized by a red heart, or the "eyes are the window to the soul" with a big close up of an eye. These visual metaphors have been done over and over.

so....what is a metaphor? Make sure you understand that first....look it up! Here or here and Here

Artists like Andy Goldsworthy, Maggie Taylor, Jerry Uelsmann, Sandy Skoglund,John Paul Caponigro, Juliann Kost, Jason deCaires Taylor all work with the idea of visual metaphor. Some of them like Andy Goldsworthy and Jason deCaires Taylor work with the environment and sculptures and then photograph the results of this juxtaposition.

Once you've read through this page and clicked on all the links click on the Wiki Assignments Page for more details.

Check out the amazing work of these artists and see what you like.

Andy Goldsworthy

Jason deCaires Taylor

In both instances the photographs are secondary to the process. Sculpting and setting up the raw materials in the environment is the first step.

Some artists have become masters of Adobe Photoshop layering techniques, imagery and scanned art to create unique photographs that are really almost like paintings.
Maggie Taylor and Juliann Kost are both examples of artists like this.

Maggie Taylor

Juliann Kost

Still other artists do their magic through the darkroom and the way that they photograph their work. John Paul Caponigro does use some photoshop, but he is also a master of light and amazing natural settings. He tries to capture the metaphors that these natural themes can portray. Jerry Uelsmann using only film and darkroom techniques to create his interesting images and metaphors.

John Paul Caponigro

Jerry Uelsmann

Artists like Sandy Skoglund are almost like surrealist painters who create their metaphors by building elaborate, staged sets, which then are photographed. These push the envelop on what is real and what is imagined.

Sandy Skoglund

In addition to the photographers featured here you might also look at artists who were part of the Surrealism movement in art, people like:
Frida Kahlo
Salvador Dali
Rene Magritte

Francesca Woodman is a photographer whose work contains a lot of nudity.
If you try to look her up, most images will probably be blocked.
She does have some great examples however, that might inspire you. Here are a few.


Here are some cool images I've found that might get you thinking......

Surrealistic Self Portraits 2
Mrs. Bjork's Surreal Photography Pin Board
Mrs. Bjork's Surreal Pin Board