Week 19: Words as Weapons

 Okay, before I get into the photo composite I did this week, today was Mother's Day.  I am truly blessed to have a very loving and encouraging Mom, who's faithful prayers, I believe, are the reason I am alive today.  There is a line in a song by Imagine Dragon's "I Bet My Life" that says, "There's you in everything I do", and there is.  I love my Mom so very much, I am blessed.   My blessings however, extend to Ginger's mother as well, who loves me as a son.  I could not be happier.

So this weeks photograph was inspired by an article in Photoplus and a song by Seether, "Words as Weapons."  I had decided, when I saw the article that I wanted to use my own photo's.  So I had to take a self portrait.  So I hooked up my flash unit with a honeycomb grid, put my remote release on my camera, got everything set up and took a shot.  Of course, once I figured out I had manual focus on my lens instead of auto focus, my shots started looking A LOT better (yes, even experienced photographers make mistakes!). 

So I love this shot for a couple of reason's.  First, it was taken with the lights on.  Second, I was able to get a black background with just the settings on the camera.  Third, I was able to use my flash with modifiers and everything just worked wonderfully.  Like I mentioned above, once I had manual focus off on my lens, I was able to get tack sharp focus. 

So the next step was following the article.  This is where the song came in.  In my life I have been called many things. People use words as weapons, whether at work, play, or even church.  When the article called for finding text on the web, I had other ideas.  I began by getting definitions of the things I had been called.  As the list began, I wanted to end the list with positive things I had been called by those I loved.  And so the idea blossomed, and the article became a template to my own creativity.  Here are two of the final composites:

If you look close, you will see that the words conform to my face.  I had to learn how to make a displacement map, which was pretty cool!  The difference between the two is the font used and I cleaned up some of the word spacing in the second one. 

My first two attempts did not have the words all the way across:

 As the words in the song say:  "All I really want is something beautiful to say"  Words as Weapons, SEETHER.


For those interested, this is the text in the photo:

Words can be weapons I have been called many things ad·dict adikt/noun noun: addict; plural noun: addicts a person who is addicted to a particular substance, typically an illegal drug."a former heroin addict" synonyms: abuser, user, drug addict; More informal junkie, druggie, -head, -freak, pill-popper, dope fiend "stealing money for your next high, just like the addicts out in the street" informal an enthusiastic devotee of a specified thing or activity. "a must-buy book for the crossword-puzzle addict" synonyms: enthusiast, fan, lover, devotee, aficionado; informalfreak, buff, nut, fiend, bum, junkie, fanatic, maniac "skiing addicts"  al·co·hol·ic alkəˈhôlik/ Adjective adjective: alcoholic  1. containing or relating to alcoholic liquor. "beer is the favorite alcoholic drink" synonyms: intoxicating, inebriating, containing alcohol, fermented; More strong, hard, stiff; formalspirituous "alcoholic drinks" caused by the excessive consumption of alcohol. "alcoholic liver disease" suffering from alcoholism. "his alcoholic daughter was the cause of his anxietyn noun noun: alcoholic; plural noun: alcoholics 1. a person suffering from alcoholism. synonyms: dipsomaniac, drunk, drunkard, heavy/hard/serious drinker, problem drinker, binge drinker, alcohol abuser, person with a drinking problem; tippler, sot, inebriate; informalboozer, lush, alky, boozehound, dipso, juicer, wino, barfly "he is an alcoholic"  sin·ner sinər/ noun noun: sinner; plural noun: sinners a person who transgresses against divine law by committing an immoral act or acts. synonyms: wrongdoer, evildoer, transgressor, miscreant, offender, criminal; archaictrespasser "on a mission to rescue these sinners from the darkness" Translate sinner to Use over time for: sinner rogue rōɡ/ noun noun: rogue; plural noun: rogues 1. a dishonest or unprincipled man. "you are a rogue and an embezzler" synonyms: scoundrel, villain, miscreant, reprobate, rascal, good-for-nothing, ne'er-do-well, wretch; informalrat, dog, louse, crook; datedcad; archaicblackguard, picaroon, knave “a rogue without ethics"  And yet regardless of what i have been called i have found re·cov·er·y rəˈkəv(ə)rē/ noun noun: recovery; plural noun: recoveries 1. a return to a normal state of health, mind, or strength. "signs of recovery in the housing market" synonyms: recuperation, convale- scence "her recovery may be slow" improvement, rallying, picking up, upturn, upswing "the economy was showing signs of recovery" antonyms: relapse, deterioration  2. the action or process of regaining possession or control of something stolen or lost. "a team of salvage experts to ensure the recovery of family possessions" synonyms:                retrieval, regaining, repossession, getting back, reclamation, recouping, redemption, recuperation "the recovery of the stolen goods" re·demp·tion rəˈdem(p)SH(ə)n/ noun Noun: redemption; plural noun: redemptions 1. the action of saving or being saved from sin, error, or evil. "God's plans for the redemption of his world" synonyms: saving, freeing from sin, absolution "God's redemption of his people" a thing that saves someone from error or evil. "his marginalization from the Hollywood jungle proved to be his redemption" 2. the action of regaining or gaining possession of something in exchange for payment, or clearing a debt. synonyms: retrieval, recovery, reclamation, repossession, return "the redemption of their possessions” exchange, cashing in, conversion "the redemption of credit vouchers" paying off, paying back, discharge, clearing, honoring "the redemption of the mortgage" fulfillment, carrying out, discharge, performing, honoring, meeting "the redemption of his obligations" archaic the action of buying one's freedom.art·is ardəst/ noun noun: artist; plural noun: artists a person who produces paintings or drawings as a profession or hobby. Synonym designer, creator, originator, producer; old master "a mural artist" a person who practices any of the various creative arts, such as a sculptor, novelist, poet, or filmmaker.  a person skilled at a particular task or occupation.  It does not matter what a person says about you, you are not defined by them.  You are not defined by your short comings nor are you defined by what someone may label you.  I have indeed struggled with alcohol and yet I am in recovery now.   You will see that the words of weapons goes from addict, to alcoholic, to sinner, to rogue, to recovery, to redemption, to artist to creativity.  At one time I chose to identify myself as an addict.  Now I choose to define myself as an artist.  The road has been long and hard, but in my recovery I found my creativity.

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