When creating an image that tells a story. I ask myself 2 questions. “What if…”? “Why…”? and then ask myself “…is it time to stop”.

Take this image for example. This was one of a series of slightly sinister images. My story: The boy in the image flying his kite was carried away in the wind and was caught in a tree. He is suspended over a river. His, in this case, sister tries to cut him down, but in doing so he will fall into the river.

So now the question now start.

What if… there was a picture within the image itself. Why…? because that would give the ladder something to lean against.

What if …the stream overflowed out of the picture?

Why …would the rabbit be in the image? The young girl wouldn’t be photographed without her toy rabbit, which she is actually holding in her left hand… so what if we had a rabbit in the photo. She was happy with this.

What if… the wallpaper reflected the scenery in the picture.

What if…. we had a canoe in the background….. Why..? It doesn’t add anything to the image and what would a canoeist be doing on a river with lots of low-hanging branches (you get my drift). So I didn’t add it.

… So we are nearly there. The final statement. “Is it time to stop” would adding any more spoil or enhance it…..?

In this case, I added one more thing. The reflection of the viewer in the glass of the picture. For me, it completes my image.

What if? Why? and When to stop