Titles and Captions…
When you add words, ideas and thoughts to your work they change the viewers perception. Including words within your work also changes the meaning of the work, because we can not, not read them. We are compelled to read the titles. We are drawn to the words and their meanings. Walker Evans knew this and spent many years photographing old signs. His students would find them and bring them to him, as well as his huge collection of found signs. He was fascinated by how the words changed the meaning of his photographs.
Have you ever titled your artistic photographs?
Have you ever thought of changing the meanings of your work with an interesting title. Consider how the title will change your work? You can even go on to include an extended caption, that explains in more detail what you are interested in exploring.
Firstly look at my included photographs, trying not to read the captions, and notice how they make you feel. Now, as you read through my captions notice how they change the meanings of the photographs for you.
Some thoughts about titles and captions:
Reference other artists work that influenced you, or that inspire you. My example here is Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh.
Introduce a new concept or idea to the viewer.
Identify a subject, person or place
Tell a story
Explain a feeling or an intention
Take the viewer on a journey into your thoughts
Add an extra layer of meaning
Steer the viewer in a different or specific direction
Personalise the artwork
Ok… so now it is your turn. Post three photographs, that you feel you can expand with well thought out captions. See if you can change the viewers perception. Introduce a new concept or idea or even emotion through your words. Take some time with this exercise. Your photographs will speak to you and your titles and captions will come. Add a title and a caption to each photograph you post.
Personally, I sometimes find it easier to work with another person. When I started naming my Flesh and Stone Series with ancient gods, I sat with a dear friend, Kitty, whom offered many great ideas and helped me with the words.