Teaching Materials - Exercise

Mirror Illusions

Name of Artist Educator: Enoch Cheung
Level:
Excercise Category: Visual storytelling

Let your mirror be your canvas!


Concept / Inspiration:

Let your mirror be your canvas! Blend reality with illusions using a mirror that allows various objects, landscapes or people from different contexts to appear in the same image. The result is intriguing and bizarre at the same time. With help of a mirror, students are encouraged to explore the relation between the things they see and create innovative images with different effects.

 


Goals:

To develop students’ observation skills and creativity, as well as to let them carry out their own photo shoot outside the classroom.


Materials / Equipment:

  • Cameras
  • Mirrors

Location:

Outdoors (this workshop was carried out in the Kowloon Walled City Park)


Workshop Description:

The workshop is divided into two parts:

Part One | Mirror illusions photo shoot (2 hours)

  1. First of all, the instructor can show students some sample work by different photographers and artists, such as those portraits in which the model’s torso seemed to have disappeared into a reflected image of the landscape.
  2. Brief the students about the outdoor photo shoot. Each of them will be given one mirror.
  3. Students in groups of two will explore the Kowloon Walled City Park for inspiration. Encourage them to let their imagination fly and create mirror illusions in their work by incorporating different objects and elements.

Part Two  | Sharing session (30 minutes)

After the photo shoot, students will show each other their work and share their experience. The instructor may give them guidance on how to solve certain problems.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA


Actual Outcome:

It was a new concept for most students, so it was no surprise that they encountered certain difficulties during the process. For example, some senior form students were frustrated about producing work that looked too similar to the samples; on the contrary, some junior students wondered why they could not produce the same transparent effect as in the samples.

In fact, there were quite a few interesting compositions and illusion effects shown in their work. It would be good if students can think outside the box and produce something different from the sample photos. It often requires trials and errors to establish their own style. Encourage them to experiment more. Making mistakes is part of learning.


Work:

Work by Wong Wing Hon
wong_wing_hong_20140412_004

Work by Lee Wing Kei
lee_wing_kei_20140412_022


Student Feedback:

“It’s the first time I use a mirror to create optical illusions, something I’ve never tried before.”

“This workshop is very interesting, but I’m a little disappointed that I didn’t manage to produce the effect I wanted to.”