The Soldier in the Raw
I'm stepping away from Santa Fe overlays this week in order to focus on an element of the raw image that I've neglected the past 33 weeks. Truth be told, it creeped me out when I first noticed it. In the bottom right corner of the raw, just to the bottom left of the vertical beam of light, is a person rotated 90 degrees. To me it looks like a man, but perhaps you see someone else? You may have to tilt your head to the left to see him.
I can't help but wonder who is this man? How did the shadows and light come together to form this apparition of a human? If I could let my imagination run wild, then I like to think that he was a soldier. This is a Vietnam Veterans memorial after all. He was a soldier who died fighting as so many soldiers have done throughout the history of war. Maybe he was in his 30s, living in the heart of Savannah, GA. Maybe he had a wife and a son. I could keep going on with this, but let's see where the edits lead us in the story of this soldier.
I decided to make a selection of the soldier, and ended up with some extra elements that I thought would make for fun editing. Particularly that vertical beam of light. This beam of light has been pesky at times, having a tendency towards blowing out in highlights when I try something outrageous. I like to think it will make for fun imagery in this case, especially next to such a dark figure. I started by copying my selection, rotating it 90 degrees, and placing it in one corner to start. Oh wow. What if I added another copy in a different corner, and rotated to mirror the first? Oh boy. Now we're heading for the good stuff.
I continued with the process until I had all four corners filled with copies of this selection. The results remind me of the view from a starfighter in Star Wars. Now I have to think this this soldier was a pilot in the Air Force, and these are the views he saw as he traveled across foreign lands. The final image results in a disintegration of the aircraft, symbolizing his untimely crash landing. You can read the details of week 34 here.
What do you make of all this? Do you see the soldier, or does the image remind you of someone else? Maybe there are other figures lurking in the image? Share your thoughts and stories in the comments below.