Second coursework photography project
Rebecca Waterson. AS photography.
Brief Experimental: The photograph as an object As a medium, photography has traditionally been used to document and capture ‘decisive’ moments in time The aim of the ‘The photograph as an object’ is to showcase photographs that explore the physical qualities of the printed photograph thus blurring the distinctions between art and photography. I chose the themes: ‘Slowly disappearing into nothing’ and paired it with ‘Delicate objects’
For my first idea, I want to take pictures of flowers/greenery that can be found in my garden. I think this will introduce the idea of “delicate objects”. I also want to picture dead and dying flowers so that I can tie in the idea of “slowly disappearing into nothing”. I can picture these dead and alive flowers together, or I can develop them on photoshop so it looks like they’re in the same picture.
Artist research (visual)- Rita Soromenho This group of photos is called ‘First Walk’. To achieve these photos, Rita has gone for a walk around the ‘London wasteland’ and picked up flowers, weeds and other shrubbery along the way. I love these photos by Rita Soromenho, because they’re so visually striking. There is juxtaposition between the beauty that the flowers hold and the darkness and sadness symbolized by the black coloured background. The black background also helps the vibrant colours from the flowers stand out. I also really like the way she has bundled the flowers together with some yellow and black tape that she picked up on on her walk, as it reinforces the reality of where she picked up these flowers. These are nice to look at, even though they have come from such a dirty place in the world, which is a contrast. These photos inspire me because I want to use the element of flowers in my own work, to suggest fragility. The flowers she has used in her photos seem to be wilting and are becoming slightly dry, and I was thinking of using this element in my photos to help make the title “slowly disappearing into nothing” more apparent. I think the dying flowers can be used to represent death, but in a more subtle and beautiful way. Although, I think I could take pictures of flowers whilst they’re still alive. As it’s winter, I should be able to get some pictures of frosted plants and flowers, which will make them look fragile. I am planning on taking pictures of the flowers/plants whilst they’re in their natural growing habitat, as this will allow me to focus on one at a time rather than a bunch.
Evaluation of initial photos I originally wanted to take these photographs to show the fragility and delicateness within certain objects. I’ve always been quite fascinated with ﬂowers, so I though that this was the perfect opportunity as it portrays my theme in a way that is both beau?ful and chilling. I think I achieved the idea that was to show the delicateness within the ﬂowers, by using a shallow depth of ﬁeld and just focusing on the main subject. On most of my photos, I used a shallow depth of ﬁeld so that I could help make the ?tle ‘fading into nothing’ more apparent. This is apparent with photos 1, 3 and 7. The photos have a soG focus on them so that they aren’t so harsh looking. However, with photos 5, 6 and 8 I made them look extra sharp so I could experiment with what looks beMer whilst developing my photos. The ligh?ng in these photos were bright, as it was broad daylight when I took these photos, although I brought down the brightness in photoshop to make the photos look dark and a touch more frosty looking. I am pleased with the composi?on of my photos, as I feel as though I have taken the rule of thirds into considera?on (photo 3), and if not, my photograph is s?ll visually appealing as there is something to look at in most of the frame. I feel as though the photos that include the red berries (1 and 2) don’t go with my theme as well as some of the lighter/more cold colours do (for example, the colours in picture 3 are beMer ﬁMed for my theme) because my theme reminds me of the past/ghosts and cold colours remind me of this more so. I feel that with the photos were the clarity have been made high on photoshop (photos 4, 6 and 8), the viewers can really get a sense of the texture of the plants, as they have been made clear by moving up the clarity. The texture of the plants is really apparent, and it reminds me of veins or ?ny rivers. I think these photos may educate my viewer, as they show close up images of ﬂowers and plants, which they may not be able to see normally. I think some of the photos with the darker backgrounds could creep them out slightly because they look scary and haunted. I feel as though my photos could achieve my level of symbolism beMer if I could have bought the clarity up on all of them, so that the viewers would be able to properly see the textures of the plants. I don’t think my blurred/out of focus photos worked as well as I thought they would, although; I am going to develop them so the clarity will be less important if they are being buried under ﬂower petals, etc.
Ar?st research (developmental)-‐ Stephen Gill I really like this photo by Stephen Gill, in the series titled “hackney flowers” because he brings 3 dimensional elements into his otherwise 2 dimensional photos. The image comes alive by re-photographing his already existing photographs with items that were already in the photo on top of the photo. The red berries already in the photo are not too obvious and are quite small- near the back of the picture. By enlarging such a small detail rather than an already obvious one, Stephen Gill has drawn attention to the background as well as the foreground. I think this makes us, as viewers appreciate the photo more altogether because we are drawn to certain parts of it that we may not have noticed before- in this case, the berries. After analysing this photo by Stephen Gill, I can say that I am inspired by his skills when re-photographing his already existing photos. This is something that I would definitely like to take into consideration and possibly do when I develop my own photos. I would also like to photograph berries, because they are vibrant in colour (as shown in this photo) and I think it will help show a clear link between him and my own work if I choose to photograph berries as he has.
Evaluation of developmental photos I used photoshop to combine some the photos I had taken of the flowers with some vintage postcards of the area that I live in. I really like how these came out because I feel that the vintage/ delicate idea that I wanted to achieve showed through these photos. I feel as though the photos with the leaves in them (photos 4 and 5) give the viewer a real sense of the texture of the leaves, because even though the opacity was turned down, the vein-like texture of the leaves is still easy to make out. In photo 2, I used the burn tool on photoshop to make the photo seem a lot darker than what they were before. These shadows make the postcard stand out from the picture placed upon it. The shadows also give the photo a slightly dark/scary sense to it. In photo 3, I feel as though the flower buds are symbolic of the people in the postcard. Seeing as these photos were taken many years ago, the people on this postcard may have passed away, and so these flowers could be seen as a sense of remembrance. Although, on first glance, the flowers in this photo might not be so apparent, they could look like something else. In photo 1, I used the photo of the red berries and green leaves on top of one of the postcards. I think this fusion of photos works well together, because the red/green gives the photo a splash of colour without being too obnoxious. The colour red can be quite loud in photos sometimes but it is subtle and washed out in this particular photo. Adding onto this, the berries do not take up the whole photo, only the top half of it, making them less obvious. I also re-photographed the postcards with dried flower petals on top. These also worked well, because the flowers are subtle way to add something to the photo. Once placed on top of the old post cards, the dried flowers look delicate and pretty. The pink flower petals were semi transparent and allowed some of the underneath photos to pass through them; the best example of this is in photo 6. I really like the effect these see through petals give, as it changes the colour of the postcard slightly, giving it a pink tinge. This set of photos links with the theme â€˜disappearing into nothingâ€™, because flower petals are covering some of the postcard, thus making the postcard almost disappear. In photo 8, I used a mixture of dried lavender coloured flowers which also allowed some of the underneath photo to pass through. On all three of these photos (7 8 and 9) I made the clarity very high, which made the photo gritty and brought out the smallest of details.