Music and Math

Soft Light Guitar
Soft Light Guitar

A musing on the relationship between math and music, in photographic form.  The normal interpretation of this comparison would be about the evidence of pattern and form, and the linguistic nature of music, but I’m going to take a different tack this time: the instrument itself, as interpreted with geometry.  Apologies in advance to Euclid!

Look at the lines, the curves, and their relation.  Symmetry, duality, and complement.

I shot this close-in to achieve just that effect, and limited the sharpness and lighting to make the focus fall squarely on the strings and lower fret board.  And the black-and-white removes the distraction (in this case) of color, to further drive home the point that the shapes are the essence of the image.

But you can also do it with a range of tonalities, as here.  Because, in the end, what is the zone system, and exposure metering in general, if not math?  Powers of 2 for shutter speed and ISO, and logarithmic scales for aperture!

Guitar in IR
Guitar in IR

This one I shot similarly, but actually converted to infrared black and white, as I found it to bring out the rosette much better.

So like I said at the start, I see the relationship.  Maybe just because I am a math nerd and play guitar, but I still say I’m on to something.

Now go listen to some good guitar music, and plan your next photoshoot.

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