Words are funny. We mostly take them for granted but sometimes a new word sneaks into our consciousness that opens up a new way of thinking. I just crossed paths with such a word -- synecdoche -- a figure of speech in which a part is made to represent the whole or vice versa in which the whole is made to represent a part. Like when we say "plastic" for a credit card, "wheels" for a car or "the White House" for the president.


Which got me wondering -- do visual synecdoches exist? Of course, they do! Turns out several of my series are visual synecdoches. Maybe the best example is my "Hands" project. The whole point of "Hands" is to show how a part (in this case, hands) can express so much about the whole person. The images in this series are "portraits" of hands of people doing things they care about - working, creating, playing. At one level, I'm trying to show the amazing qualities of hands - texture, color, gesture and form. I'm also trying to give a sense of what it might be like to stand beside the person. To imagine what they look like, what they sound like and maybe even what they're thinking.


Here's one of my favorite "Hands" images:



Plasterwork

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