I decided to shoot my photographs of one of my favorite thrifted coffee mugs which is filled with green tea. I thought it was fun to think of different ways to shoot something as simple as a mug and how different each photograph ended up coming out despite using the same exact object.
My first photograph I chose to shoot from a birds eye view directly on the mug. Steam wafts up and blurs part of the mug which I think adds a really interesting effect. I found this image pretty objective because I don’t get a particular feeling about it and it doesn’t remind me of much, but I loved how the dark blue color of the mug looks with the beautiful, colorful pattern in the background. I believe choosing to shoot the mug alone with nothing but pattern in the background adds to the objectivity of it.
For my second photograph I chose to focus on the quote printed on the tea tag and back light the mug with a small tea light. In the background are cards and frames which, combined with the warm lighting from the candle, makes the photograph extremely nostalgic. It makes me think of curling up on your couch for a night in. I chose to photograph the tag from a close, eye-to-eye angle and blur the background. It makes you focus mainly on the quote, ”Live with reference for yourself and others.” The background is not what the eye immediately focuses on, but aids in creating a warm and cozy mood and tone.
My third picture is a self portrait and has a darker and moodier tone. I tried to play off of the dark colors and the greens in my eyes and in my hat. I chose to vignette and fade the image to add to the moody tone. The harshness of the flash gives it kind of a grittiness and washes the color from my face and hands. I like that the mug is still in the foreground of the photo and is the closest thing to the lens but it doesn’t overwhelm because of the contrasting brightness at the top of the photo.
For my fourth and final picture I decided to do a second self portrait but completely change the mood. I wanted to make it dainty and airy and light. The mug represents the comforting and relaxing feeling of taking sips of tea or coffee while reading a good book. I like that the purposeful blurring of the image makes the eye focus on the color and mood of the image more than anything, and the subject matter can be more up to interpretation. It makes it a bit more mysterious but in a light and fun way.