Evidence of Love - Photographs of Our Birthday Cakes

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

My chapter for The Photograph and The Collection is a critical essay reflecting on the role of the birthday cake within the family photo album.The photograph of the cake served at a family party has an important role in securing some of the myths of the Western family album. But what sets the photo of the cake apart from any other photo in the family album? The answer is this: Cake photographs look like classic crime scene photographs, like evidence. Consider - cake photographs tend to employ a hallmark use of harsh flash due to the proximity to the subject. Cakes are generally photographed unemotionally, matter-of-factly. And, like a photograph of a bullet, wound or bruise, the cake photograph does not speak to the scene at large but rather to a detail, an isolated but meaningful titbit. In the photograph of the birthday cake we find the smoking gun of family love. If we are interested in promoting an image of our happy family it makes perfect sense that we photograph our cakes and present them as evidence within our family albums. This frosting-covered icon, for better or worse, denotes the fact that we love and are loved. (My submission will be both visual and textual. The final piece will make use photographs from my own family’s albums.)
LanguageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Photograph and the Collection
Place of PublicationEdinburgh, Scotland, UK and Boston, Massachusettes, USA
Pages284-293
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2013

Fingerprint

Birthday
Family Album
Albums
Icon
Proximity
Crime
Flash
Smoking

Keywords

  • Cake
  • Party
  • Family Photography
  • Album
  • Forensic Photography

Cite this

Deveney, K. (2013). Evidence of Love - Photographs of Our Birthday Cakes. In The Photograph and the Collection (pp. 284-293). Edinburgh, Scotland, UK and Boston, Massachusettes, USA.
Deveney, KayLynn. / Evidence of Love - Photographs of Our Birthday Cakes. The Photograph and the Collection. Edinburgh, Scotland, UK and Boston, Massachusettes, USA, 2013. pp. 284-293
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abstract = "My chapter for The Photograph and The Collection is a critical essay reflecting on the role of the birthday cake within the family photo album.The photograph of the cake served at a family party has an important role in securing some of the myths of the Western family album. But what sets the photo of the cake apart from any other photo in the family album? The answer is this: Cake photographs look like classic crime scene photographs, like evidence. Consider - cake photographs tend to employ a hallmark use of harsh flash due to the proximity to the subject. Cakes are generally photographed unemotionally, matter-of-factly. And, like a photograph of a bullet, wound or bruise, the cake photograph does not speak to the scene at large but rather to a detail, an isolated but meaningful titbit. In the photograph of the birthday cake we find the smoking gun of family love. If we are interested in promoting an image of our happy family it makes perfect sense that we photograph our cakes and present them as evidence within our family albums. This frosting-covered icon, for better or worse, denotes the fact that we love and are loved. (My submission will be both visual and textual. The final piece will make use photographs from my own family’s albums.)",
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Deveney, K 2013, Evidence of Love - Photographs of Our Birthday Cakes. in The Photograph and the Collection. Edinburgh, Scotland, UK and Boston, Massachusettes, USA, pp. 284-293.

Evidence of Love - Photographs of Our Birthday Cakes. / Deveney, KayLynn.

The Photograph and the Collection. Edinburgh, Scotland, UK and Boston, Massachusettes, USA, 2013. p. 284-293.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

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N2 - My chapter for The Photograph and The Collection is a critical essay reflecting on the role of the birthday cake within the family photo album.The photograph of the cake served at a family party has an important role in securing some of the myths of the Western family album. But what sets the photo of the cake apart from any other photo in the family album? The answer is this: Cake photographs look like classic crime scene photographs, like evidence. Consider - cake photographs tend to employ a hallmark use of harsh flash due to the proximity to the subject. Cakes are generally photographed unemotionally, matter-of-factly. And, like a photograph of a bullet, wound or bruise, the cake photograph does not speak to the scene at large but rather to a detail, an isolated but meaningful titbit. In the photograph of the birthday cake we find the smoking gun of family love. If we are interested in promoting an image of our happy family it makes perfect sense that we photograph our cakes and present them as evidence within our family albums. This frosting-covered icon, for better or worse, denotes the fact that we love and are loved. (My submission will be both visual and textual. The final piece will make use photographs from my own family’s albums.)

AB - My chapter for The Photograph and The Collection is a critical essay reflecting on the role of the birthday cake within the family photo album.The photograph of the cake served at a family party has an important role in securing some of the myths of the Western family album. But what sets the photo of the cake apart from any other photo in the family album? The answer is this: Cake photographs look like classic crime scene photographs, like evidence. Consider - cake photographs tend to employ a hallmark use of harsh flash due to the proximity to the subject. Cakes are generally photographed unemotionally, matter-of-factly. And, like a photograph of a bullet, wound or bruise, the cake photograph does not speak to the scene at large but rather to a detail, an isolated but meaningful titbit. In the photograph of the birthday cake we find the smoking gun of family love. If we are interested in promoting an image of our happy family it makes perfect sense that we photograph our cakes and present them as evidence within our family albums. This frosting-covered icon, for better or worse, denotes the fact that we love and are loved. (My submission will be both visual and textual. The final piece will make use photographs from my own family’s albums.)

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KW - Party

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Deveney K. Evidence of Love - Photographs of Our Birthday Cakes. In The Photograph and the Collection. Edinburgh, Scotland, UK and Boston, Massachusettes, USA. 2013. p. 284-293