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Reach for the Sky: A Senior Surreal Photo by Emily Porat (2015)

For my Surrealist photograph, I used multiple photoshop techniques and layers. My original concept was to have a person holding sky in their hands, but as I worked, the idea morphed into a photo within a photo within a photo of a person holding the sky in a pot. I used HDR photography for the focal point image of the sky, and I kept everything else black and white so the focal point was accentuated further. The hardest part of this photograph was making sure that the sky fit perfectly inside the pot. To perfect this, I used a clipping mask along with the spot healing tool. I also had to make sure that the photos flowed perfectly together and that the viewer can't tell when one photo ends and another begins. I had to play around with the size of the photos inside each other to make sure nothing got cut off strangely and there were no stark contrasts in color.

The meaning behind the photo is that trying to capture something impossible is an endless cycle. The sky is an integral part of nature that has no true beginning or end, so in one sense it is uncapturable, but in another sense, it is constantly all around us. Reaching for the stars equates to working towards an awe-inspiring goal, so this piece begs the questions: what does reaching for the sky entail?
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