Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Phoctober the fifteenth

Frog and Toad are friends (Blog and toad...?)

What I was supposed to be shooting, when I was gazing moonily at the weeds from my previous post, were a small frog and a toad who I am told is his friend. Both had been constructed by my friend, who is designing the poster for a production of "A Year With Frog and Toad" in one of the suburbs with a grain in the name.

When he first asked me to shoot these, he did not know that Frog and Toad are Friends was the first book I bought from the Schoolastic Book Club when I was in Kindergarten. When it arrived, as the only kid in my class who could read, I was obliged to read it aloud in front of the class. Looking back, I may have had a really lazy Kindergarten teacher, making me read stories all the time as she did. No doubt she was envious of our naptime. On the one hand, making me read aloud when I had crippling shyness issues was sort of mean. On the other, I did spend a fair chunk of my adolescent and adult lives as an actor, so maybe it wasn't so much mean as incredibly early career training.

My friend did a nice job on the figures. I hadn't seen the book or its characters for ages, but they still struck a chord of recognition for me. We walked out into the little wilderness behind his house, posed them, furrowed our brows, moved them, moved the props, rotated things and generally did the things you do when taking pictures of tiny frog statues in a muddy field. I had a thick blanket to lie upon while I got down close to the ground to shoot our tiny subjects, but still managed to get a fair amount of mud on my shoes and pants. It was wet enough that if I stood still for longer than a few seconds, i could feel myself slowly sinking into the earth. Probably not a great day to have worn canvas shoes.

I was not, frankly, completely happy with the results of the shoot. Too many of the shots had focus issues caused by my crappy unfocused eye or from trusting the autofocus to not select a single blade of grass as my subject. Still, there were some I thought were nice, and at least one that my friend liked enough to make into a poster, which is kinda the main goal.

I told him that I would do a better job photographing them for the sequel. When I was told there isn't one, I sat down and came up with several. Whoever owns these characters, let me know if I should proceed with any of the following:

Frog and Toad are Coworkers and Nothing More.

Frog and Toad are Sisters AND Mother and Daughter
"Forget it, Jake. It's Amphibiantown."

Frog and Toad are Friends Until They Meet A Salamander and Each Decides to Vie for Her Affections, Which Causes an Irreparable Breach in their Relations, Despite the Fact that the Salamander is Not Remotely Interested in Either of Them

Frog and Toad are Dead
by Tom Stoppard

Frog and Toad are Two Personalities Housed in a Single Body

Frog and Toad are Metaphors

Frog and Toad are a Dual-Income Family Earning a Combined Total of $170,000 Per Year. Under Which Candidate's Tax Plan are they Better Off?

Snail Goes to Jamaica


This was more for me than an actual part of the shoot. I wish I'd gone back and taken one like this once we had the kite set up. I really like having to look for them a bit.

This is the one that got selected. We cleaned out the wires, and fiddled with it a bit for the final poster.

More or less the same as the select, except in this one their friend the snail has arrived to deliver a letter.

The final shot, wires removed, in poster form. From this I learned that tickets to something like this are far more expensive than I would have guessed. And that a photo credit is a gratifying thing.


Other Phoctobering:

All 2008 Phoctober posts from this site.

Minx finds poetry in a statue.

It isn't too late to join the fun. Just do a photo post, mention Phoctober, and come and tell me about it in the comments.


Unknown said...

Frog and Toad are no longer friends?

Baino said...

Cute, very cute. Sorry you're not well, come over to Sydney for some Sunday sunshine!

Wanderlust Scarlett said...

I love Frog and Toad and I think you shot it pretty well.

Aren't we always our own worst critic? I thought that was true until I took my photos in to my photojournalism professor.
Not true.

I have *finally* participated, if I may still. I've been out of town and wasn't able to get to this till now.

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

Wanderlust Scarlett said...


I am catching up. I have participated again since the last time I visited here. That's 2 days in a row!

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

Taffiny said...


Debi said...

Sneaked in just in time before Phoctober morphed into Photember.

Taffiny said...

I hope you've had some Christmas cookies and hot chocolate; I know that is what Frog and Toad would do.

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