'Winter Solstice' by RLHall, ArtfulExpress All Rights Reserved
I recently made a local sale of this matted print, which the buyer said that she loves because it reminds her of the 'Twilight' sagas. It caused me to reflect once again, upon the titles we bestowe upon our works and how they affect the viewer.
In this case, the photo was indeed taken on the evening of the winter solstice, and the mood of the photo somehow reflected that spooky association, I thought. I had not yet read the 'Twilight' books by Stephenie Meyer. After reading and enjoying all of the books, and seeing the first two movies, I still hadn't connected my photo with the popular stories. When it was remarked to me that it was this aspect that ingraciated the person to my work, I could instantly see that the atmosphere of the image did reflect the aura presented in Meyers works. Even the title seemed to fit, since similar celestial events are mentioned in the series.
Had I actually initially named the image Twilight, which would seem to be an appropriate title for the photo as well. I'm sure it would have gotten many more hits in online searches and perhaps many more sales.
An artist's work is an important form of intimate expression of their own reactions and opinions, a form of self-therapy at times. Though I have always thought, of course, that art should bring out the personal feelings of those who view it as well. Those feelings may not always bring the same associations that the artist themselves had intended when they actually created their work. It seems apt that the viewer can relate to your vision, without quite understanding it's deeper meaning in your eyes and soul.
In this respect, a given title may stifle the inner reactions of those contemplating the piece. Though I enjoy authoring titles for my artwork, I sometimes struggle with the exact phrase to express my thoughts. And I sometimes find it interesting to display a work as 'Untitled', so that one can form their own reaction with no preconcieved train of thought from me. Often the most intuitive visions are expressed, that can shed a whole new light or glimmers of meaning beneath the surface...teaching me something new about myself and my craft.