Further Experiments?

Ideas for further experiments, themes or things I could try out:

Portrait

I’ve thought about adding moving things that will glow, like glow sticks or lights to my portraits; maybe I could try to drawing something with the lights, but would this create a different meaning and would it have the same effect like the others did, because everyone seemed to like them just how they were.

Try something with mirrors? (I wanted to use mirrors in my tableaux theme, but I never got round to that idea) I’d like to see what would happen.

Draw something on my hands; when I cover my eyes I could have eyes drawn on the back of my hands. And when I cover my mouth draw a mouth on my hand.

Still life

I’m thinking of looking into photographing the same bunch of flowers over a period of time and see how much it changes during each shoot.

Something; old, new, borrowed, and blue – I really liked the image I made at the crit and the flowers and glass container we all ‘borrowed’. I brought some flowers a couple of days ago and I was thinking of photographing them as the go older so that would be ‘old’ and in my garden we’ve had some Daffodils come out for spring – they’ll be ‘new’. Not too sure what to do for blue…

I’m wondering if to try and photograph outside the studio; but I really liked the things I did in the studio…

Sarah Gardner [Still Life]

  • Sarah Gardner is a British photographer and author

I came across Sarah Gardner on Facebook and she posts some really beautiful images of flowers. She photographs flowers with shallow depth of field to blur out the background, she focuses on the flower closes to her and the rest of them are blurred and out of focus or sometimes she focuses on all of the flower and the textured backgrounds that she makes are blurred. She doesn’t use white plain backgrounds like what I did in the studio; she uses pages ripped from books to create her backgrounds or she places them on a wooden table to get a wooden texture.

She uses bright coloured flowers and uses a variety of containers like glass jars, vases, and even a bucket – which is something I would like to try to do in my shoots, I want to try to use different containers, but at the same time similar to each other so they look like a series.

Her images look so beautiful and look so dream like and ‘fluffy’! I like how close she gets to the flowers and capture the detail in them, I wanted to do this but after the still life workshop, I want to get the whole flower and it’s container in focus. I did also like the effect I got from shooting into the light, the light would travel through the petals to make them look purer. I do like the idea of going out of the studio and photographing flowers like Gardner does, I don’t think I’ll get the same effect of shooting in a studio, but it’s something I can think about.

 

I could be wrong but I do believe she edits her images to get the ‘dreamy’ feeling to them, again something I could look into but I don’t think that sort of edit would be right for my work. But I’ve enjoyed looking into her work – I’m not looking to do anything in this style, but it’s been nice to see other ways to photograph flowers without using a studio and into the light (I think Gardner uses natural lighting in her images).

Anneè Olofsson [Portrait]

  • Anneè Olofsson is a Swedish artist

We were shown Anneè Olofsson’s work during a lecture and we were asked to look at her images and discuss in groups of what the image was about.

We were shown two images, one was of a woman who had her back to the camera; she appears to looks alone, until we noticed the hands under girl’s top and the other image showed the hands in the woman’s hair – I believe the series is called Skinned. We thought the meaning behind it was that someone was under the woman’s skin; something or someone was bothering her, someone was watching her or keeping hold of her. We were then told that the woman in the images was the artist and her father! After hearing this I started to read the image slightly differently – it felt creepy… and I started to wonder if the man was taking advantage of girl or was he supporting her and protecting her! It also made me think what their relationship was; specially after I did more research into her other work; in some of her other images she has someone else’s hands covering Olofsson’s face or other parts of her body, and it switches between male and female hand (the artist’s father and mother).

© Anneè Olofsson // Image Source: http://tica-albania.org/tb3/episode_4.htm

In her Trick or Treat series also features the artist and her father; while in another series, it’s the artist and her mother. The images of her mother look intimidating; Olofsson’s mother looks like she is over powering the artist and controlling her and watching her but the mother could be protecting Olofsson!

I’ve researched into this artist because during my Interim Critique someone pointed out that the hands in my portrait images looked like someone else – even though they weren’t they were mine. But it’s made me think about my portraits more and the possible story behind them – I just wanted to capture movement within a portrait, but everyone else seem to think they were deeper than that. I’m now torn between doing my Still life idea or the portrait (everyone seemed to like the portraits, but I’m worried that I feel I have to do them because everyone liked them). I’m going to try a shoot in the studio and see how I get on with doing these sorts of portraits with the P40, because I don’t think I’ll get the same effect like I did on my Canon camera.

Interim Critique [11/03/14]

I got some really great feedback at the interim critique; I get worried with the crits and I worry that when I try to explain my ideas no one else will understand them, but at the same time they’re great to get feedback on work and they help push me in a direction towards making my final images.

The first thing that came up when we started looking at my work was they couldn’t tell which one was my portraits and which was my tableaux!

portraits test 4 portraits test 1

The group first looked at my portrait images; I presented two images that I believed were my strongest images from the shoot and edits I did earlier in the week. Someone had said that it reminded them of the ‘see no evil’ and ‘speak no evil’ – I believe these are represented through monkeys (the three wise monkeys); this was interesting to hear, because when I was taking these images it did remind me of this, but I didn’t want to link them together because that’s not really what I had in mind for these images – I wanted to capture movement within the images. A couple of people said that they felt something bad was going to happen and the person was trapped or being held back or the hands were part of the imagination (neither here, nor there), and it had a ghost feel to it. One of the lectures said that these where really powerful images! this comment really surprised me; my idea of the portraits was to capture movement but nearly everyone at the crit felt that they were much more than that! Another thing that came up was they though that the hands belonged to someone else because they looked bigger and they belonged to a man (which reminds me of an artist we looked at called Anneè Olofsson) also I didn’t know whether to be offended or not by this comment or not because they were my hands! I was worried that these images would not be allowed because they weren’t sharp, but someone said that if they were sharp they wouldn’t have the same effect. I got some really good feedback on the portraits – better than what I expected!

still life edited 1

The next one everyone looked at was my Still Life work and the first thing that was said was ‘it does what it says on the tin’ and I didn’t know if that was a good thing or a bad thing – but by the way it was said I’m going with good. Some said that they looked illustrative, the image was so sharp someone thought it looked drawn. Someone also pointed out that from far away the glass container disappears and it looks like the flower was floating and the whole thing was very simple but effective and worked well as a still life. A couple of changes were suggested to this one; one was adding more white space around the image, so it gave it more ‘room’. The second suggestion someone made was getting more of the reflection in the glass  or even all of it, this I wasn’t too sure about because I like that you could only see a small part of the reflection and also, I don’t think I would have been able to because the glass that I used wouldn’t be big enough to get all of it without cropping. Again I had some very supportive feedback with this and I was glad, since this is the theme that I wanted to go with.

carrie

The last image were my tableaux images; this was the one that I wasn’t really confident with and I was kinda ready for the negative feedback that it got; I showed them my two edits of the same image to get feedback on both. The first comment was they were too close to portraits, and the main focus was on me (the model) – not the objects as the framing was too close to my face. Someone did say that it need more ‘space’ for the narrative to unfold; which I could have done on the shoot, but I didn’t plan this shoot very well anyway. They did feel if I was to choose one of the images, the one without the flower petals worked better because they felt the petals were distracting. They did wonder whether it had something to do with lost of innocents because of the blood (this story does touch on growing up and the things that happen when we do). After telling them the story behind the image; someone suggested placing the name somewhere in the image, so that people who do know the book or films they’ll be able to make the connections.

Overall; I was really happy with how the crit went, it went surprisingly better than what I was exacting! I was really surprised that my portraits got such great feedback, I wasn’t too sure about them but after the crit I felt I wanted to do this theme, but I really enjoyed doing the still life work and I already had a couple of ideas for that theme, so while doing my next shoots I’m going to have to decide which one to do.

Tableaux shoot – Carrie inspired [09/03/14]

I wasn’t looking forward to this shoot; I didn’t want to do this theme but because we needed to show one piece of work from each theme. My idea for this theme was to base my tableaux theme on a book, one that I could place reference from the book, my chosen book was Carrie by Stephen King.

Notes made from rereading the book and watching the movies:

– She’s an outcast

– light bulb explodes during the shower scene where is believes she is bleeding to death

– Mum makes her pray for forgiveness by locking her away

– Carrie discovers she has telekinetic powers

– she’s elected as Prom Queen and has pig blood poured onto her while on stage, she burns down the school for revenge

– When she gets home her mum stabs her and Carrie kills her mum (pinning her to the wall with knives with her powers in the movie), Carrie dies from blood loss.

– In the newer movie Sue visits Carrie’s grave and it has been vandalized, Sue places a single white rose on the grave, when she leaves the gravestone cracks 

Due to the fact I didn’t want to go into much depth with this theme, I created an image that looked like a girl was praying. As me as the model, I wore white; and had a crucifix in my hand. Because the book has a lot of blood scenes like the shower and prom scenes I got some fake blood and made blood drips on some paper, which I edited into my face in Photoshop. I wanted to include a white rose; so I edited some red rose petals, changed them to white and place them hovering around me so I wanted to show Carrie’s power by doing this. I wasn’t too sure about this so I made the same image but with two different edits, one with the petals and one without.

carrie

I’m worried that people who haven’t read the book or seen the movies will understand what it’s about – however I’m worried that I haven’t given enough clues as to what the story is. This isn’t my best work but I worked with what I had at the time and the set up that I could use that the time, maybe if I was to do this again I’d think this through more and plan it out better.

Portrait shoot [07/03/14]

For my portraits I wanted to capture movements, like what Francesca Woodman did in her work. I’ve used two seconds of exposure on these images of myself, and while the image was being taken I moved my hands or my head. After taking these images I did wonder what would be said at the crit, whether these sorts of images would be allowed because they’re not your ‘typical’ portraits (I was worried that these images will get picked on because they’re blurry).

portraits test 1

With this one I placed my hands over my mouth

portraits test 2

This one I moved my head slowly left and right

With this one I moved my head really fast so my head was blurry.

With this one I moved my head really fast so my head was blurred

portraits test 4

With this one I place my heads over my eyes

portraits test 5

Half way through the exposure I moved out of the frame

i-D Magazine Cover Research [Portrait]

i-D is a British magazine which focus’ on fashion, music, art and youth culture (founder Terry Jones, former Vogue art director).

I remember looking at the i-D covers at college; the recurring theme behind the images is that the model/s always had the eye on the left covered by their hand or hair or an object or they would just have it closed. I believe they did this to match the name of the magazine; look at the title i-D to the left it creates a winking face.

When  we looked at these at college we were told to recreate them; but in our own style and they had to relate to us, so we tried out covering our eye with objects that related to us. I won’t go into much detail with that because I’m not looking into ‘copying’ this style again. I was looking at the covers to see how I could create portraits that would ‘hides’ the models slighting.

I want to do long exposed images and capture the movement and one thing I could do is have the face hidden behind an object or the hair of the model or their hands (all of which is moving toward the face so it create a ‘ghostly’ effect). I was only looking at i-D’s covers for some ideas; the style of them are all quite interesting, but not what I was thinking of doing (I did notice in some of the images the models have been placed with solid coloured backgrounds and others haven’t, I can’t really tell if their on location or it’s just a textured background).

©i-D // Model: Laetitia Casta // Photographer: Charlotte Stockdale // Image Source: http://biggworld.com/biggworld-magazines-december-covers/

©i-D // Model: Sam Rollinson // Photographer: Alasdair McLellan // Image Source: http://ftape.com/media/?p=62251

©i-D // Model: Kate Moss // Photographer: Charlotte Stockdale // Image Source: http://www.mydaily.co.uk/2013/02/05/kate-moss-id-magazine-cover-pictures/

©I-D // Model: Selena Gomez // Photographer: Scott Trindle  // Image Source: http://www.idolator.com/7475348/selena-gomez-i-d-magazine-cover-shoot

  • Research for Portrait idea: “Capture Movement: I’d love to do some portraits that look at everyday movements, but I would like to show the movement in my work; like a long exposed image were you can see a ghostly figure move across the image. Examples of movements: walking, running, arms moving, covering eyes, dancing. I’m not too sure whether to do this in the studio or outside (maybe I should try out both).”

https://staceysimons14.wordpress.com/2014/02/19/my-ideas/