Monday, August 28, 2006

A wise man once said, "Never look back in time." Said wise man must've seen my high school senior pictures.

In Jerome, Idaho, no moment of a teenager's life holds more significance than that of getting his/her senior pictures taken. The idea of being immortalized in soft focus while leaning against a step ladder is met with heavy anticipation. The actual photoshoot itself is much like a right of passage. A child walks into the studio and emerges an adult (with a couple 8x10's and a few sheets of wallet-size). These photos not only capture the physical transformation of a child, but they also instill a heroic sense of optimism. A can-do-anything attitude that is ever needed in meeting today's demands of success.

As I was cleaning out my garage this weekend, I found some boxes of memorabilia that my mother had dropped off after they sold the house in Idaho. Apparently, my mother was extremely detailed and committed to saving every possible element of history in regards to my life. Every report card, every handwritten note, every doodle made while sitting in church, every paper written for school, every home movie, and most importantly, every photo.

I couldn't help but take the time to go through every single picture, each transforming me back to a place that time had forgotten. I was especially taken back by my all-important senior pictures. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. So I did both. It was weird.

It is with much pleasure that I present to you the photos of, "When Steve Became a Man."

Delightful in a Junk Yard
This particular piece demonstrated my equal mix of two parts softy and two parts hardcore. By mixing such diverse emotions, this photos could be issued with equal acceptance from both the church-going crowd as well as the hardcore kids who would skip class to smoke cloves behind the bleachers.

CHURCH GOERS: "Aw, Steve. What a cute smile."

HARDCORE KIDS: "Dude, junk yards are wicked."

Ponder, Yet Snowboard in a Junk Yard
Props are not to be taken lightly when it comes to your senior picture. And apparently, they aren't to be taken in context either. No matter. This shot utilized the time-honored technique of black and white creating a wealth of drama. It says, "Hey, I snowboard, but anyway, I'm sitting in an old bus in the middle of the junk yard. What's life all about?"

The Monster Rock
Who was hardcore? Steve was hardcore. This piece really cranks the volume with a low angle and a monster stance. The setting Idaho sun mingled with pants meant for obesity really makes the statement. Throw in some leather boots and you better just walk away from this photo.

The Thoughtful Musician
With my head tilted just slightly and my instrument resting on my inner thigh, this photo really expressed my sensitive side. Sure, the facial hair suggests perma-rocker, but the deep stone washed dropcloth interlaced with the hand-to-chin pose speaks volumes of thoughtfulness. It proclaimed, "Within each hardened soul is a vulnerable butterfly, fully capable of a romantic dinner and a movie. And hey, check out my wicked axe."

The Confused
Sadly, not all senior pictures work out as well as they may have on paper. This is one of those pictures. The combination of elements, emotions, and location conclude in nothing save it be a trainwreck of upheaval.

The I Want My Grandmother to Think I'm Sweet, but Still a Snowboarder
Recipient planning - a key ingredient to any successful senior picture. Knowing your target audience and your intended message can save you hours, even days worth of post heartache. This piece is a classic example of "play it safe, yet I still participate in a sport commonly frowned upon by society." By limiting anything that could be taken as offensive by people familiar with a more conservative era, this photo checks all family members off the "Here's my senior photo, now send me money" list.

The Prop Amalgamation
"Now we've got all these props here in the studio. Let's randomly throw some together and see what we get. Oh yeah, that's nice. Just like that."

Prop-Aided Symbolism
At the ripe age of 18, who doesn't feel fenced in? Who doesn't feel as though the entire world is trying to keep them down, trying to douse their flames of expression. I know I sure did. And this photo captures that. The scowl (peering through strands of hair) says, "For every fence you put up, I'll provide a bulldozer to knock it down." I think this photos also says a bunch of swears too.

While the following photo isn't a senior picture (I believe this is seventh grade), it is definitely worth comment. Now, I believe my mom was a caring mother. I believe she had my best interests on the top of her priority list at all times. What I can't figure out, however, is how she allowed such a monstrosity of a haircut to exist on my head. I mean, were scissors even used here? Straight lines sure weren't (notice the overstated curve atop the right eye). But perhaps the most perplexing thing is the variety of hair styles all integrated into one. So far, I've counted a bowl cut, a Brian Bozworth, and a semi mullet. Clearly, a lethal combination.


Blogger Julia said...

Wow! You're like cheese, or perhaps a fine wine dude, because you just got better with age!

9:30 PM

Blogger ~j. said...

The Prop Amalgamation is certainly my favorite.

Need any of you in a suit & nametag?

6:19 PM

Blogger AzĂșcar said...

I was sure that the agressive rock stance on the car was THE picture until I saw The Caged Beast.

Bunch of swears...

8:30 PM

Blogger more caffeine, please said...

Did you know that the snowboard picture was THE photo Hailey showed me when she claimed she had "found the man of her dreams" and was "going to marry him, I know it!"? She had that in her wallet when she came to visit me in Washington D.C. That was my first impression of you. I love it!!

8:27 PM

Blogger :: STEVE :: said...

Ha ha. Jamie, please tell me Hailey was intoxicated when she made said claim, whilst providing said rocker photo for visual reference.

11:10 PM

Blogger jaytee'sbtw said...

What?!! Those are hilarious Steve! I must say, the pose behind the fence is my favorite!! Awesome pics!! Tell Hailey hello!!

5:56 PM


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