Introduction To Oddities
For us, an oddity can be defined as just anything that is slightly or more out of the ordinary. It is something that does not conform with the expectation, what people are used to see or think in every day life.
Some examples of the broad possibilities include:
– Frozen movement of an subject in the air
– An unusual pose or expression of a model
– A photo with a clear intentional tilted angle
– A photo taken with the camera not at eye level, how usually things are viewed, but the camera much lower.
– Not the subject itself but (also) a recognizable depiction like a reflection or shadow of the subject
The worlds best and famous photos often have one or more oddities in them. As an example the very famous photo ‘Behind the Gare St. Lazare’ of Henri Cartier-Bresson has multiple oddities in it. It is not usual for a street to be flooded. The running man is frozen on the photo, while it is obvious he should be moving. In addition it looks like he is almost walking on the water. Not only the running man is shown, but also an upside down reflection of him.
Oddities can make the viewer curious, consciously or unconsciously. ‘Hey, something strange is going on here, something is not fully normal, but it is not quite obvious what it exactly is.’. It is often quite an achievement to have a fraction of the precious attention of the viewer.
People often don’t see at first glance that you used a low camera position below normal eye level. That might become clear by looking better at your photo for a second time.
Oddities trigger something in the mind. They create tension or leave something to the imagination. A very succesfull oddity can even be intriging. You don’t have to go completely wild and freaky, totaly twisted, or out of the world and cry out loud for attention. But if you want to, you can.
A tremendous range of oddities has already been used in the history of photography. A remarkable photo isn’t only unusual compared to real life, but is also unusual in photography. Find your own style and be creative.