Activity 7: Self Portrait & Easter (Visual Communication)

The objective of this activity is to enhance our understanding of body image and identity through the exploration of design elements and objects used as symbolic reference to portray a message and evoke emotion.

I have decided to create an environmental portrait of my real life. Since it is a Easter time, I would like to show you how I decorate Easter eggs every year. I have always been very creative and love to maintain traditions , therefore Easter is one of my favorite holidays.

The scene captures me decorating the Easter eggs but when you start exploring the photo in more detail, you can see some of the results in the front already. The background emphasizes another important elements of my life – wedding photo as I got married last year and a piano which I play occasionally now, but have spent about 8 years of my childhood taking lessons at the music school. So the purpose of the photo with its background is to show I am a family oriented person who is passionate about traditions, art and music. To emphasize the environment I have added some dark vignetting to the photo and increased saturation and clarity. It would not be appropriate to decrease saturation or use sepia nor black and white filters as Easter is about colors. No artificial light has been used, only a day light coming through the window.

Easter 2014

Here is a quick tutorial how to make these Easter eggs:

What you need: eggs with the paper box, plastic cups, egg coloring (food coloring), wax crayons, pencil with pin, wine bottle cap/top

Use plain eggs with the most brightest tone and keep the paper box. For dying the eggs prepare few plastic cups and eggs coloring (or food colors) – add one bag of the color powder (or small food coloring bottle) into the cup, approx 100ml of hot water and one spoon of vinegar. I leave eggs in a cup for approximately 10 minutes or more for better color effect. Let the eggs dry out in the box. After drying out, make a small hole on top and then on the bottom of the egg with the tip of the knife. The bottom hole should be a bit bigger. Blow out the egg through the top hole. Make sure you dry out the eggs afterwards so you don’t loose any color. Now you are ready to paint your eggs. I use electric cooker which I cover with alu foil. Make sure you remove all the plastic inside the bottle cap. Add parts of crayons into caps but work with one each time. Do not boil the colors – I use very low temperatures just to keep the color warm. When it is melted you can start painting the egg with your pencil with a pin on its end (the pin cannot have a plastic head as it would get melted). Make small quick lines –  it takes a bit of practice. If you are too slow, the effect won’t be that good. Also, be careful with the colors as they are hot (use pliers to move them aside). The wax dries out quickly, so you can place the eggs for display immediately. Hope it works, let me know if you have any questions, I will be delighted to help and see your results. Happy Easter!