Category: Developing and Understanding Photographic Practice


After I had problems with Assignment 1, I spoke to my tutor Jonathan who gave me a mini project to do, using my digital camera, to show I can use the light meter and can control the camera.

I actually kind of enjoyed this. I decided to take photos of my route home from the society I attend back to my house. I took photos of things I notice every-time I am walking home.

Because I usually walk home at night from the social I thought this was a great opportunity to show that I can control the camera and properly light a photo using the light meter to tell me aperture and shutter speed. I was proud of the results, especially the longer exposures of the cars driving past. It has always been a form of photography that has fascinated me and I really enjoyed  playing with different angles.

I think my photos show a varying range of different types of nighttime photography, which I believe shows my ability to experiment out of my comfort zone, which night-time photography really is.

The beginning

Out into the cold

Small box of light

Harsh Alleyway

Beautiful Lampost

Shadows

Horror Movie Style/ Where my life revolves

Natural and Unnatural textures

Framed

Waiting

Stunning Moon

Shooting

City Stars

Advertisements

This project has had a lot of ups and downs for me.

When I thought of encountering cultures and the question ‘Are you in harmony or in conflict with the social structure that you are a part of”, I immediately thought of stereotypes and people who are judged by those considered ‘normal’ for just being a bit different, when in fact they are still normal, happy, functioning human beings.

 

For this project I researched Diane Arbus, Nan Goldin and Nicholas Nixon. The first two because of how they are considered to photograph people ‘on the edge’ of society, and Nixon because his style was something I really wanted to consider for my project.

I also did a large amount of research into how my chosen subjects were portrayed on the internet. This included regular stereotypes that were thrown around, what information you could find and how accurate or inaccurate it all seemed.

 

I decided to focus of three main ideas for my project. The first two are very similar, two hobbies I love and am a part of and that have their own social structures within the hobby , the Anime Society and the hobby L.A.R.P (Live Action Role Playing). The second idea was something I am also familiar with, invisible illness. This could either refer to mental or physical problems that are simply not visible to the human eye and the stereotypes and assumptions that surround these people.

 

I first photographed the Anime society with a 35mm Pentax Manual Film Camera. I simply photographed them socialising in an attempt to show that just because they have a hobby they love and enjoy does not make them ‘wierdos’.

Though the photos came out successful I thought they were too bland. Also the idea had dulled slightly in my head, I had at this point become far more interested in my other two concepts.

 

My next set of photos were from a L.A.R.P event I have been attending for over 8 years now. I used a Mamiya RB 67 Medium Format Camera with Ilford 120mm 125 ISO film. I took standing photos in landscape of people one at a time in their costumes. I collected information from each person about what they do and think and documented their name, their characters name and their real life job.

My intention for the L.A.R.P photos was to show that even though these people have a hobby that could be considered very nerdy and strange, they are actually normal people who just happen to have a hobby they love. I wanted to dispel the stereotypes I had researched that labelled all geeks as male, lifeless, friendless, jobless losers with no purpose in life who are just obsessed with fantasies.

I was very proud of this set of photos and planned to take more around the same time I photographed my Invisible Illness photos.

 

This is where everything went a little wrong.

 

I took 5 roles of film and the Mamiya RB 67 camera with me back down to the South East of England to collect more L.A.R.P photos and  complete my invisible illness idea.

For my Invisible Illness concept I got in contact with multiple people who had illnesses that feel into this criteria and met up with each of them. I took around three photos per person that ranged from simple portraits to them doing poses that to them represented how there illness made them feel. I then questioned them on their life and asked them to give me a a quote of what they wish they could tell people who make assumptions about them just because their illness is invisible.

 

Sadly, none of the photos came out. For both my second batch of L.A.R.P photos and all my invisible illness photographs, they were all underexposed.

This was quite a crippling blow for me. I had worked very hard and felt like I had nothing to show for it.

Luckily, after speaking with my lecturers, I decided to continue my project with the nine photographs I had taken from the first L.A.R.P event as they were all successful. I also went ahead and trouble-shooted what went wrong with the camera and have documented everything that happened and how I dealt with the situation.

I have done a second mini project to make up for the missing photograph in this project (we are meant to have 10 and I have 9) called ‘from here to home’ which was set for my by my lecturer.

 

Overall, in spite of everything, I am actually incredibly proud of the outcome of this project, and how I dealt with issues that arose.

I have overcome problems and have a good set of work to show at the end despite them.

I think my ideas are fluid and my research and planning has been in depth and thorough.

If I was to change anything if would be that I took so many photos without having the opportunity to develop any of them which meant I didn’t realise there was a problem until I had taken all of my photographs and that meant instead of losing some I lost them all.

However, because I had looked into so many different ideas and had taken so many photos at varying intervals, I had options to fall back to which stopped me from having to completely change my ideas last minute just so that I could complete the project and take photos.

 

 

 

 

 

We were all given a word to do a presentation on, and photographers to research for it. My six artists were Diane Arbus, Elinor Carucci, Nicholas Nixon, Larry Clark, Nan Goldin and Sally Mann. My word was Intimacy. I tried my best to link them all together, and I found it easier to work on this by using a book to place my research and ideas into.

I have photographed my book work so that I can document my presentation on here as well.