The word silhouette is derived from the name of Étienne de Silhouette, a French finance minister who, in the mid eighteenth century, was forced by France’s credit crisis during the Seven Years’ War to impose severe economic demands upon the French people, particularly the wealthy. Because of de Silhouette’s austere economies, his name became synonymous with anything done or made cheaply. Prior to the advent of photography, silhouette profiles cut from black card were the cheapest way of recording a person’s appearance. I think that this silhouette of the female photographer on the rock is one of my best black and white compositions. The mist and morning layer in the background contrasts sharply with the wet stone in the foreground, with the tiniest break in the line of the outcropping (in perfect thirds, I might add) made by the photographer. I cannot say that my eye was drawn to her initially, but once it caught her, my eye became curious and could not look away – and if I did, I was always drawn back.
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