Tuesday, 24 July 2007

The Egg Chi!

Dichotomy is a tough concept to illustrate! The yin yang symbol encompasses the ideas of dark and light, good and evil, etc., but it's a total cliche by now. I wanted to do something different. I tried to think of things you separate, and when I thought of separating eggs it just clicked.

It took me a few tries to make this happen: I cut the white shape (and the hole) out of thick paperboard to make a mold. The board wasn't thick enough, so I pressed white paper tape along the edges. Then I covered the shapes with nonstick cooking spray and held them down on a flat griddle. I poured several egg whites into the mold and turned the griddle on to cook it. Carefully removed the mold using an X-acto knife to help separate the edges and then transferred the white shape to the pan with a spatula. Cooked yolks aren't particularly attractive, so I cooked the bottom just enough to be able to transfer it (I went through several because they kept breaking). Once arranged in the pan, I hit everything with cooking spray to make it shiny, then used a butane lighter to lightly scorch the top of the egg white in spots so it would really look cooked.

I had my tripod on top of the stove pointed straight down, and a single monolight brolly box high overhead at top right. It took a while to get the light into the right position so the shiny outline of the pan would complete the symbol. The irony here is that my cooktop was knocked out by lightning last week and I don't have a new one yet, so I couldn't really cook this egg on the background shown. :-/

Processing: Convert from RAW at two exposure settings to help control darks and lights, dodge & burn, touch up edges slightly with Liquify, clone a few stray specks and lighten the scorch marks (they were too much), Photo filter to tweak a color cast, Levels, HSL and USM.


Thoric said...

When you stop and think about it... this egg taijitu lends much understanding to the nature of balance:

The yin (the dark, female side), contains the yolk -- the true "egg" part from which the baby chick would grow -- is on its own too decadent (containing all the fat and cholesterol) to eat too much by itself. It would not be healthy to eat only egg yolks (despite how tasty).

The yang (the light, male side), as pictured above, only has the egg white. The egg white mainly provides protection for the yolk, and also nutrients for later stages of growth. The white (for those of you who have eaten plain cooked egg whites without the yolk) is technically healthier without the yolk, being a nearly "fat-free" source of protein. It should be noted that without the yolk, it is also taste-free, and not very satisfying... without substance.

As for the bit of good in every evil, and the bit of evil in every good, one should note that yolks do contain valuable nutrients. Also note that egg whites are high in protein. Too much dietary protein can also be bad for you.

Cindi Penrod said...

Dude, how absolutely sad that you claim this image as your own. The photographer who worked very hard to create this image and who wrote the description of its creation that you copied has been notified. Image theft is not funny and in this case really pathetic.

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