I am giving a lot of thought these days to titling images. Before I pontificate, I would love for you to comment below or email me with what you think....preferably just one or two words...when you look at the image pictured above.
There was a time...not too long ago....when I thought that titling my images was a very important part of my process. I often came up with a concept or title first, then built an image around it. If I was out with my camera making photographs, a word would often come to mind while I was pressing the shutter.
It was important to me to guide the viewer with my title....to help them understand what I was trying to convey with my image.
Now I'm not so sure about that. Isn't it better to let the viewer decide what the image means to them?
Let's use the image above to try to illustrate my point.
I made this image last year and gave it the title "Forgotten". I am currently preparing for an exhibit and plan to include this image. With everything going on in the world these days, I thought maybe more positivity was in order and considered changing the title to "Gratitude".
The two different titles would certainly direct the viewer in two very different directions.
But why do this? Why not let the viewer decide whether it's a melancholy story or something more positive?
My current thought is to use more generic titles to allow the viewer to create their own story. I'm curious to know your thoughts about this.