With the Photographer Summary, Theme by Stephen Leacock
With the Photographer Summary
Stephen Leacock is a modem English prose writer. He has written: many prose pieces. All his prose pieces are known for their subtle humour. They talk about real life situation. ‘With The Photographer’ is a short prose that describes the Leacock’s experience with a photographer. Leacock, as is the regular case, gets a bitter experience.
One fine day, the author went to a studio to take a photograph of him. “I want my photograph taken”, said the author to the photographer. Here ‘my photograph’ plays a major role throughout the story. After looking at him, the photographer who is a drooping man in gray suit asked him to sit and wait without enthusiasm. After an hour, he asked him to come in.
The author went in and sat down under a beam of sunlight filtered through a sheet of factory cotton. He rolled his camera but was not satisfied with something which made the author look very grave and shook. “The face is quite wrong”, he said. Even though it is humiliating, the author accepted his statement.
He found fault with every part of the author’s face and suggested that it would have been better if it was three-quarters full. He kept on complaining about his head, ears and his facial features and twisted it. Soon after, he told him to open his wide mouth a little and close it immediately. When the photographer continued finding faults with his face and physical appearance, author asked him to stop his complaints.
“This face is my face. It is not yours, it is mine. I’ve lived with it for forty years and…”After speaking harshly, author started to rise from the seat; in the meantime the photographer pulled the string in the camera and took the photograph without the conscious knowledge of author. He had caught the author in a moment of animation (in today’s sense candid). The author asked to show his picture but he neglected and asked him to come back on Saturday to collect the developed proof.
Author came back to the photo studio on Saturday to receive his copy of the photograph. When the photographer unfolded the proof, the author was shocked and asked “Is it me?” The photograph is quite unlike of him as all his facial features were altered. The photographer had effected many changes and retouched them. He also removed the eyebrows and drawn new ones and adjusted his mouth a little.
He happily stated that, he used a process named ‘the delphide’ for removing them. He had even removed the hair that was on his face. This enraged the author to blast over the photographer. He said he had come there for a photograph exactly like him, the real him but the photographer has changed his whole appearance to show his professional photographer tag. He asked him to keep that photograph with him because, for him it is s worthless bauble. In the end, the author left that studio with tears.
With the Photographer About the Author Stephen Leacock
Stephen Butler Leacock (December 1869 – March 1944) was born in England and moved to Canada when he was six years old. He attended Upper Canada College and later received a B.A. degree from the University of Toronto; he entered the University of Chicago and was awarded a Ph.D. in 1903. He became a Canadian teacher, political scientist, writer, and humorist.
His fame now rests securely on work begun with the beguiling fantasies of Literary Lapses and Nonsense Novels. Leacock’s humour is typically based on a comic perception of social foibles and the incongruity between appearance and reality in human conduct, and his work is characterized by the invention of lively comic situations. Most renowned are his Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town, which gently mocks life in the fictional town of Mariposa. He also wrote The Boy I Left Behind Me (1946), an uncompleted autobiography.
With the Photographer Theme
The story ‘With the Photographer’ deals with a man’s humiliation and depression when he went to a photographer’s studio to have a photograph of him. In the beginning, we can see the author who is the protagonist of the story was in an excited state of mind as he was very much willing to have his own photograph. But when we went to the photographer, he saw his disinterested face.
The photographer made him wait for about an hour and then when he was finally called the author to take his photograph, he started complaining about his facial features. He kept on doing so, until it got annoying. The author felt insulted and told the photographer to stop complaining. When finally the photograph was taken, the author asked him to show his photograph but the photographer was disinterested in this too and told him to come later to take the final copy. When the author came to take the.
final copy, he saw his facial features had been edited and there was no similarity with his real face. The author was shocked and asked the photographer about this. But the photographer told him that he edited that photo because he felt that it was needed and hence appropriate. This saddened him and made him feel insulted him even more. The story ended with the author, leaving the studio with tears in his eyes.
With the Photographer Title of the Story
The story ‘With the Photographer’ is all about the author’s meeting with a photographer to have him photographed. But in that process, the author gets humiliated for his facial features which the photographer found inappropriate to be photographed. At first, he made him wait for about an hour and then when he called him to take his picture, he started his commentaries about his facial features to which the author became angry and got insulted.
After a brief annoying conversation, the author’s photograph was finally captured but when the time for delivering came, the author was shocked to find out the picture, totally different from his real face. The photographer had edited it to make him satisfied with his piece of work.
This saddened the author and he left the studio with tears in his eyes. The story ended on a sad note. So, in this story, a meeting of the author with the photographer is depicted here that left a deep impression in his life. Thus the title is apt.
With the Photographer About the Story
The story ‘With the Photographer’ talks about the author, Stepher Leacock’s bitter experience with a photographer. He once visited a photographer’s studio to have his photograph taken but in that process he got humiliated by the photographer.
This story shows us how a man, who just wanted to get his photograph, had to bear insult just because of his face. The story has the theme of insecurity, anger issues, confidence, acceptance and appearance.
Main Points to Remember
- The story shows how a person who went to a photographer’s studio to have a photograph of him, got humiliated.
- In the story, the author went to a photographer’s studio but the photographer made him wait for a long time with a disinterested look on his face.
- When finally he was ready to take the author’s photograph, he started to get dissatisfied with the face of the author.
- He kept on complaining about the shape of his face and other facial features which insulted and angered the author very much.
- Finally the photograph was captured but when the author came to take the developed proof of the photograph, he saw his facial features had been changed and there was no similarity with his real face.
- This made the author very sad and he left the studio with tears in his eyes.
With the Photographer Setting of the Story
The story ‘With the Photographer’ is set at the studio of the photographer where the author came to have him photographed. But in doing so, the author gets humiliated for his facial features which the photographer found inappropriate to be photographed.
The story’s beginning, middle and end, totally revolved around the studio of the photographer where the author had to wait for about an hour to have his picture clicked. Not only that, but also he had to hear the annoying commentaries of the photographer about his facial features.
The author got angry and felt insulted. Somehow, when finally his picture was clicked, the photographer refused to show him his picture and delivered him a completely edited photo of him which had no similarity with his real face.
When asked, the photographer told him that it was needed for a perfect photograph. Shocked, heartbroken author, left the studio with tears in his eyes and the story ended there. Thus it can be said that the setting of the story had a perfect reflection of the plot of the story.
With the Photographer Annotations and Vocabulary
Enthusiasm — strong excitement about something
Dim — not bright or clear
Unwarrantable — not justifiable, inexcusable
Pursuit — occupation, the act of pursuing
Beam — a line of light coming from a source
Frosted — having a dull surface that looks as if it is covered with frost
Crawl — to move with the body close to the ground
Pane — a sheet of glass in a window or door
Grave — serious
Çease — to stop happening, end
Twist — to bend or turn
Contract — to draw together so as to become diminished in size
Swing — to move with a smooth, curving motion
Animation — liveliness
Bitingly — unpleasantly and critically
Momentary — lasting a very short time
Superficies — a surface of a body
Withering — very harsh, severe or damaging
Emboss — to put a raised design or piece of writing on paper
Bauble — an inexpensive piece of jewellery which has a little artistic value.