Small Data

posted in: Personal Projects | 5

This is a personal project of mine.  People talk a lot about “big data” these days, but I am more interested in “small data” that I generate myself and arrange.  I often experiment with repeat photographs from my immediate surroundings. I don’t expect to create a narrative with my photos; in fact, I mistrust narratives. But I am looking for patterns.

These photos were taken with a “trail camera”, which has a motion detector, and the ability to photograph at night with infrared light. Hunters and wildlife biologists use them a lot.  Usually my camera took a burst of 4 photos at a time.  The camera was fixed to post near my house and pointed at the fence next to our neighbor’s house.  In a year, I got about 4500 photos from the identical vantage point. I assigned keywords to the photos, and then sorted by keywords, and then made grids.  The results are below.  The “raccoon and right or climbing” photo is currently on exhibit at the 21st Juried Show at the Photo Center NW.

 

5 Responses

  1. frogola
    | Reply

    How long did it take you to tag those keywords?

    • brianallen
      | Reply

      A couple of evenings.

  2. brianallen
    | Reply

    And to be honest, I started skipping some of the more boring squirrels after I tagged the first 300…

  3. frogola
    | Reply

    That’s encouraging; I thought it would take longer. Do you tag all your photos once they’re in the computer? Or only per project?

    • brianallen
      | Reply

      I should probably do more with keywords. I do a lot just with folder names, and dates.

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