Wednesday, July 01, 2009

more photo chat

One of my very favorite photos that ever came back from an assignment when I was at the Chicago Reader was this one, taken by Paul Merideth, done for a story about a downstate Indiana big cat rescue center. I love everything about it: the crossing gazes of the man/lion and the way the power kind of goes from beast to man to viewer; the threat and the calm; the way the lion comes in from the side of the frame; the sad but sweet look in its eyes; the sense of scale; the composition... I think it's an astonishing photo. One of those simple/masterful things.

Today I was surfing I Can Has Cheezburger? and found the photo with a caption, a lolcat caption (obviously). I often like those, even when they're dopey, but it was interesting to see a photo I knew well reworked in that context. It felt weird and wrong. Not just because of this krazy kopyright-free world we live in, but because of all the work that had gone into it on the photographer's part and how much story was behind was sucky to see its meaning channeled into one slot by a silly caption, when so much of its power is about all its possible meanings.

Anyhow, those are my Obvious Musings on the Photographic Image for the day, basically an excuse to post this photo that I love so much.

ADDENDUM: They took the image down. Yay!

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