Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Finding Inspiration in Photos

I've learned, as an author I am a visual writer. I visualize the unfolding of a story in my mind like a movie. I see my characters moving through scenes. Old photos also inspire my muse, especially when it comes to my heroines. It's odd that I have not found as many stunning old photos of men that do the same. 

So today, I thought I'd share a few with you. This is a technique you may want to explore for yourself, whether you write or read. As a writer, old photos and paintings for historicals, and contemporary photos for contemporary fiction, can help you develop the image of your characters, not only in appearance but in demeanor. Photographs can express personality, and that is what I look for. It's simple to do. Just type into Google something specific to your genre, the time period, and character.

For example. I am currently writing a proposal for an Edwardian series. In the first book there will be two elderly aunts. So, I typed in my Google box '1900's old women' and found the one here on the left. Are they not perfect. The year is 1910. I've named these aunts Mildred and Maude.

I found photos a plenty for heroines and I will not share they quite yet, not until I have a book contract and I begin writing the stories. But here are a few more.

I searched for 'working men, orphans, families, weddings' in the early 1900s and found a group photos.

As a reader, photographs and paintings can help you visualize the characters in the book you are reading.

Now some people may say that this dismisses the use of the imagination. Go overboard on anything and that is true. So the key is moderation.


Gwendolyn Gage said...

I think pictures can inspire the imagination! Great post! I've awarded you with the "Tell Me About Yourself" Blog Award over at "Gwendolyn Gage ~ Serving Through Words" Congrats!

Rita Gerlach said...

Oh, thank you, Gwendolyn!