December 2017 - THIS week's PICTURE

Asian Water Dragon : photo by Malcolm Aslett

This handsome critter was in the Washington Zoo last time I was there. I say it's an Asian Water Dragon but I'm not one hundred percent sure. Then again, the philosphers tell us we can be certain of only one thing, though, being bachelors they never had to use the bathroom after a teenage boy and know without checking that you'd need to wipe the seat. (It's that photo from last week, playing on my mind.)

What I am sure about is that I used a filter to give much of the photo that glossy effect, as if all things are coated with an amphibian surface. I remember from school having to read a Ted Hughes poem about an otter with the two words "limpid integument". I have never ever come across this phrase or even the word "integument" again. The dictionary reading that guy must have done! As I remember it he was referring to water, and in effect was talking about the 'skin' that water has, which is creepy and cool at the same time. I think about it most times I look at water in a natural setting. That it has a transparent skin with a $100 word attached. (curse you, Ted Hughes!) you get where I am going with this? In short: surfaces: skin. Also, it provides the back wall with the look of living room wallpaper circa 1962 and inevitably goes somewhere to conveying a sense of pathos and tawdriness to the scene. Groovy.

Other than that it was mostly a matter of putting the photographic pieces where they fell. There were extra shots that included the heat lamp and more of back ground foliage. The lamp automatically changed the meaning of the scene and also elongated the image even beyond what it is now. As it is the long and oleaginous rectangle is sufficient to pair it with the subject. Don't tell Greenpeace I accused a lizard of being oleaginous. More trouble than it's worth. No more to say on it, except: limpid integument.