I found a link to the portraits of Alexei Vassiliev over on the Conscientious blog. I've drifted in and out of shooting totally blurred images and have recently started revisiting those ideas. Some of these portraits are really stunning. Worth a look. I think the stronger portraits are where the colour really makes the images striking - strong blues, vibrant reds. I've continually been fascinated with really shallow depth of field or even totally blurred images. I'm going to make more of an effort this year to shoot in this style and see where that goes. Uta Barth is another influence in this direction, for me. There's something about these forms of images, that often ask more questions than they answer that really engages me. I've been trying to move away from a totally literal style of photography, where everything is there for the viewer to grasp, quickly. Blur and out of focus regions tend to make me spend more time with an image, wondering about what might be there. Totally out of focus seems to take that to its logical conclusion.