The image of her on a greenish background draped in a tattered red scarf or burqa with her iconic green eyes directly starring at the camera became the symbol of the Afghan conflict and sufferings of the refugees. So, a visual analysis of the photograph will done focusing on how the colors and framing was effectively composed, and how it reflects her tough life but at the same time her strong resolve.
It seems that McCurry has set up the shot of the girl with apt coloring and framing, starting with a green building in the background. This green building coincidently yet perfectly matches the green eyes of the girl. The tattered and soiled red scarf contrasts with that background thereby not only complimenting the girl’s green eyes but also making those eyes stand out, which entices viewers to the girl’s striking and piercing stare. In addition, McCurry uses the girl’s own torn out red scarf to frame her face, which provides more focus to her face and eyes. As McCurry has chosen to shoot the photograph in a low light area with soft overtones, it makes the girl’s eyes even more vibrant and brighter. At the same time, the burned and ragged scarf and importantly her dirty and slightly wrinkled face reflect her difficult life. Although, some form of pre-print photo retouching was done, extensive work was not possible because of the lack of advanced technologies at that time. So, it is obvious that photo was effectively composed, both in terms of color and framing, through natural means and mainly because of the skills of the photographer.
Although the contrasting colors and framing has created a sort of illusion, when viewed deeply it provides disturbing but at the same time stunning perspectives about her emotional side. That is, when her dilapidated clothes and her haunting eyes are deeply focused, it seems her emotion at that time was a mixture of sullenness and courage. Although, the
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