Reflecting on Negative Space in Ayer, MA

April 02, 2012  •  Leave a Comment

I am fascinated with reflections.  They give me an unexpected way to interpret a subject using multiple planes of perspective and to create depth in two-dimensional surfaces.

Copyright 2012 Cindy A Stephens

Several years ago I enrolled in a drawing class.  I discovered at least two things about myself from that experience: first, I do not have a natural talent for drawing; and secondly I am very competitive and don't enjoy being at the bottom of the class.


I will never forget my confusion when the instructor asked us to draw the negative space around an object.  For anyone that isn't familiar with this topic it is one that can cause even the best student to falter at times.


Whereas drawing negative space was difficult for me I do have a knack for using multiple planes of perspective to interpret a subject photographically.  I can distinguish between what is directly in front of me as well as the often less obvious reflection of what is behind me.  I use this negative space as a way to draw (pun intended) the viewer's attention to what is nearby a storefront window, instead of merely observing what is in the window.


Copyright 2012 Cindy A Stephens

On a recent visit to Ayer, Massachusetts I was rewarded with a cornucopia of reflections.  My resulting images aren't the classical interpretation of negative space.  These images are disorienting and create relationships between what is typically seen and the often overlooked (such as reflections in glass).


I enjoy causing the viewer to ask: How a photo was taken? What is the artist trying to tell me?


The concept of Main Street is not new.  It has been a mainstay in literature, film and daily lives for decades.  By using reflection and multiple planes of perspective I hope I've found a new way to tell the story of everyday lives in these communities.




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I am a marketing professional and a fine art photographer.  With more than 20 years of experience as a marketer and image maker during the digital technology revolution, I now educate creative professionals how to create their artistic presence in the changing art world.  


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