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It's never fun being the third person when the other two are a couple.
August 26, 2011 10:59 AM   Subscribe

The Third Wheel. Australian photographer Jackson Eaton offers a series of photographs about the awkwardness of being the third person that alternate between hilarious and creepy. (Via)
posted by Bunny Ultramod (37 comments total) 15 users marked this as a favorite

 
Nice to see Buster is getting work.
posted by blue_beetle at 11:04 AM on August 26, 2011 [7 favorites]


Alternate comment: Another proud Milford graduate!
posted by blue_beetle at 11:05 AM on August 26, 2011 [5 favorites]


Okay, so from a quick glance, this guy looks way, way too much like I did ca. 2009. At least to the extent that I got seriously creeped out for a moment. (About as creeped out as when this photo was posted and a half-dozen people IMed me to ask if that was me.)
posted by griphus at 11:07 AM on August 26, 2011


#5 breaks my brain. Where's the floor in the shower? Why is it ... I ...
posted by odinsdream at 11:10 AM on August 26, 2011


It's also creepy that you typed that on my computer. How long have you been in my office?
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 11:10 AM on August 26, 2011


Yeah, what's up with #5?
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 11:12 AM on August 26, 2011


Hmm... compared to his other work, it's pretty one-note jokey. A couple are good pictures, but not to par with some of the other stuff on his site. He seems to alternate between pretty nice, abstracted compositions and distortions of scale or identity and LOVE ANGST THIS IS SO DEEP.

Looking at his CV, he does show a lot, but only since 2009. Definitely a student. If he drops the art student angst, he'll do well.
posted by cmoj at 11:15 AM on August 26, 2011


Legend, a legend, a third wheel legend.
posted by lantius at 11:33 AM on August 26, 2011 [3 favorites]


Re: #5, I'm guessing the shower has a recessed floor to keep the water from getting on the floor. I've never seen such a thing myself, but it makes sense.
posted by shakespeherian at 12:00 PM on August 26, 2011


When you see it, you'll shit (ironic) bricks.
posted by Theodore Sign at 12:08 PM on August 26, 2011


Another Indexhibit!
posted by tapesonthefloor at 12:09 PM on August 26, 2011


I like it!
posted by sweetkid at 12:44 PM on August 26, 2011


That was a lot stupider than I expected. It would be interesting to have a set of non-staged 3rd wheel photography. After my wife and I married my room mate continued living with us. He had the second floor of the house to himself, and he and my wife are good friends also, but it still provided some weirdness and stories along the way.
posted by LoudMusic at 1:03 PM on August 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


#4 and #10 made me laugh.
posted by Mister Moofoo at 1:20 PM on August 26, 2011


It's just him though, very Cindy Sherman-esque. I thought it was going to be 'real 3rd wheels'. Which can be an awkward thing, especially when caught on camera.
posted by bquarters at 1:34 PM on August 26, 2011


#16, instead of a red shirt and stuff he should have gone for a dark non-shiny black suit for some awesome Slenderman-nist touch next to the lovely tall clock.
posted by Iosephus at 1:56 PM on August 26, 2011


Christ, what an asshole.
posted by etherist at 2:09 PM on August 26, 2011


VERY SERIOUS HIPSTER BUSINESS.
posted by doublesix at 2:27 PM on August 26, 2011 [3 favorites]


It's very concerning to me that this couple has no idea their friend is Sylar.

And for crying out loud, the metaphor is fifth wheel^. You can be the third, fourth, fifth, or seventeenth person in a group who feels like a fifth wheel.
posted by dhartung at 3:09 PM on August 26, 2011 [2 favorites]



Re: #5, I'm guessing the shower has a recessed floor to keep the water from getting on the floor. I've never seen such a thing myself, but it makes sense.


I saw one on House Hunters or Property Virgins or the like a few weeks ago - they are indeed strange, but also kind of cozy and hobbit-holey I think.
posted by muddgirl at 3:13 PM on August 26, 2011


Honestly, this is awful.
posted by cincinnatus c at 3:24 PM on August 26, 2011


I'd like to ask an honest question about this photographer:

I don't get it. I mean I get the subject matter, but is this really professional photography to be hung in art galleries and sold to buyers? It looks like snapshots I took in the mid-90s with my 4 megapixel snapshot camera.

I am not trying to be insulting but there is so much art I see that is simply a kernel of an idea thrown against a page/canvas/contactsheet. Where is the artistry?
posted by tunewell at 3:41 PM on August 26, 2011 [4 favorites]


And for crying out loud, the metaphor is fifth wheel^. You can be the third, fourth, fifth, or seventeenth person in a group who feels like a fifth wheel.

I'm kinda old and I've only heard the term "third wheel."
posted by NoMich at 3:53 PM on August 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


And for crying out loud, the metaphor is fifth wheel^.

In conversations with (very good) friends (who have demonstrated a ton of patience for my sense of humor), when someone makes this mistake I cheerfully volunteer, "Oh no, a third wheel provides balance."

Strangely, I am not invited along on things of this sort.
posted by psoas at 4:02 PM on August 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


but is this really professional photography to be hung in art galleries and sold to buyers?

I am not clear what answer you want, beyond yes.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 4:09 PM on August 26, 2011


so much art I see that is simply a kernel of an idea thrown against a page/canvas/contactsheet. Where is the artistry?

Presumably on the page/canvas/contactsheet.
posted by shakespeherian at 4:40 PM on August 26, 2011


Nice Terry Richardson lighting going on here.. meaning it sucks.
posted by ReeMonster at 5:27 PM on August 26, 2011


His girlfriend's hot though. Most of the website is "Pictures of me and my girlfriend half/fully naked", the kind that any artsy couple would take of themselves.
posted by ReeMonster at 5:31 PM on August 26, 2011


I don't get it. I mean I get the subject matter, but is this really professional photography to be hung in art galleries and sold to buyers? It looks like snapshots I took in the mid-90s with my 4 megapixel snapshot camera.

Nice Terry Richardson lighting going on here.. meaning it sucks.

I have to agree here. Cute idea, clever situations and poses, but it’s like he doesn’t even know the flash doesn’t have to sit on top of the camera.

To the artist: get thee to Strobist.com.
posted by spitefulcrow at 5:44 PM on August 26, 2011


I suspect the photos are purposefully taken this way. There's a lot of vernacular-style photos out there, and it's an entirely legitimate approach to photography, and often a deliberate aesthetic choice, although it seems to rub people the wrong way sometimes.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 5:56 PM on August 26, 2011 [2 favorites]


For a second there, I thought I was looking at the Urban Outfitters fall catalogue...
posted by adso at 7:16 PM on August 26, 2011


I have no idea why this made me laugh so hard. Apparently, it's just been one of those days. Thanks for the post!
posted by stoneweaver at 7:27 PM on August 26, 2011


I'm kinda old and I've only heard the term "third wheel."

Cursory examination of GBooks suggests the tipping point was around '95. It probably has to do with the metaphor spreading beyond people who know about actual fifth wheels (which was, at one time, nearly anyone who had to hitch a wagon). The expression is correctly used in Sinclair Lewis's Main Street (1920). But like psoas, I feel it's a rationality thing: a third wheel (e.g. a tricycle) will always be on the ground, but a fifth wheel is only useful when it's connected.

And like psoas, I never get invited to those sorts of parties ....
posted by dhartung at 9:09 PM on August 26, 2011


I've read enough Vice and seen enough hipster photos that this reads as 'normal' to me. Glad they're staged, as I'd be in some of them. Ugh.
I caused a bad one, though. Turns out that when a girl texts you to come over she dosen't want you to bring the mutual friend you're with...
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 9:44 PM on August 26, 2011


Never click on the Perth links. Never click on the Perth links.

I mean.. is that his cock in her mouth in photo 4/16 of were never married?

Because now I'm going to see him at the pub or the supermarket and it'll be all "Dude, I saw your girlfriend chompin on your nob and that is not right. It is just not right! Why'd you have to go and make me the fucking third wheel, dude?"
posted by Ahab at 10:36 PM on August 26, 2011 [1 favorite]


And for crying out loud, the metaphor is fifth wheel^. You can be the third, fourth, fifth, or seventeenth person in a group who feels like a fifth wheel.

Two wheels good, four wheels bad.
posted by acb at 2:58 AM on August 27, 2011


I suspect the photos are purposefully taken this way. There's a lot of vernacular-style photos out there, and it's an entirely legitimate approach to photography, and often a deliberate aesthetic choice, although it seems to rub people the wrong way sometimes.

I agree, I think it is intentional, but ironically bad lighting is still... Bad lighting. And why take intentionally bad looking photos, opening yourself up to this exact criticism, if you know that you can do better? I think the thing that rubs me particularly the wrong way about these shots is that they are so obviously staged, but look like shitty snapshots. If you're going to make them look like shitty snapshots, stage them like shitty snapshots too.
posted by antifuse at 6:28 AM on August 30, 2011


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