Happy Little Experiment
"We don't make mistakes, just happy little accidents."
Where to start
Have you ever cooked dinner and added the wrong seasoning, but found it tasted even better? Have you accidently selected the wrong VSCO filter, but actually fell in love with a preset you never used before? Like Bob Ross, I call these happy little accidents and I love when it happens!
How to come across a few more Happy Accidents
1 > You need the willingness to explore. Yes, start with what you know, but be open to trying something off your radar. Try bringing extra props to your next photo shoot, just in case. OR Include your hands into a still life you are photographing, to add that human touch. Then see what happens.
2 > You need to allow yourself to ask "what if". What if I turned the image upside down? What if I used chalk instead of charcoal? What if I use gin instead of tequila? What if I used both!?
3 > Start with a basic idea that you wish to push further. Don't go crazy and quadruple the salt in a recipe. Pick one element to break the rules with.
My initial game plan was just to test out food coloring and water. So, I grabbed some white paper, a glass, and some dye. Drip. Drop. Capture.
This lead to a typical and expected result. I've seen it before, and I was only somewhat satisfied. How do I make it my own? Then I asked myself, what if the dye was mixed with a thicker liquid? (I ran to the frig to see what we had - creamer!) Cool. Let's pour it in this time and see how it all blends. Plus, what if I add in a little more dimension while still having a minimalistic vibe overall - yellow plexi to the rescue!
Moving the plexi into the frame showed me that the water and glass mirrored the yellow coloring - happy accident #1. I loved how the glassware broke up the overall symmetry and created a checker board effect with.
Allowing myself to pour in the coloring, rather than just dabbing it with a spoon, led way to my lack of multitasking (pouring, waiting for the camera timer, checking what was in focus, seeing how far down the pitcher needed to be) and I spilled the concoction and splattered it on the paper below - happy accident #2.
I love how all this came together by just going with a simple idea, testing out a few more techniques (they aren't always successful, remind you), and letting that "oh shit" moment lead to a few fun captures of my experiment.