Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Phil Toledano - A shadow remains

The photographer that has spent most his working life discussing fears and body image has moved on to a hugely melancholic theme of death. What it entails, what are the consequences? Who and what people leave behind once they themselves leave. Below is the promotional video which in sorts advertises this body of work.


Mario Testino- Whos that girl?


Mario Testino takes a post modernist approach with this body of work. He reenacts classic Madonna photoshoots from the past.

 








Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Martin Usborne - Dogs in cars


I was once left in a car at a young age.
I don't know when or where or for how long, possibly at the age of four, perhaps outside Tesco's, probably for fifteen minutes only. The details don't matter.  The point is that I wondered if anyone would come back. It seems trivial now but in a child's mind it is possible to be alone forever

Around the same age I began to feel a deep affinity with animals - in particular their plight at the hands of humans. I remember watching TV and seeing footage of a dog being put in a plastic bag and being kicked. What appalled me most was that the dog could not speak back. It's muteness terrified me.
I should say that I was a well-loved child and never abandoned and yet it is clear that both these experiences arose from the same place deep inside me: a fear of being alone and unheard. Perhaps this is a fear we all share at some level, I am not sure.

The images in this series explore that feeling, both in relation to myself and to animals in general. The camera is the perfect tool for capturing a sense of silence and longing: the shutter freezes the subject for ever and two layers of glass are placed between the viewer and the viewed: the glass of the lens, the glass of the picture frame and, in this instance, the glass of the car window further isolates the animal. The dog is truly trapped.
When I started this project I knew the photos would be dark. What I didn't expect was to see so many subtle reactions by the dogs: some sad, some expectant, some angry, some dejected. It was as if upon opening up a box of grey-coloured pencils I was surprised to see so many shades inside.


I hope that these pictures are engaging and perhaps a little amusing. I want to show that there is life in the dark places within us.
I will stop writing now and you can stop reading. Words can only get us so far. After all, we are all animals.
Martin, Sept 2010.










Here is a video Martin has put together, it discusses purpose and context. Along with some interesting behind the scenes footage.

Monday, 28 May 2012

Emma Livingston Tweets 21rdh














Follow Emma here

http://twitter.com/#!/emma_livingston

Tadao Cern- Blow Job

With a leaf blower pumping at full tilt in front of you, what would your face look like? Contorted, distorted and, in most cases, hilariously funny, as photographer Tadao Cern found out, and created an internet sensation in the process








Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Kirsty Allen - Loosing Touch (students work)

If you click the link you will see a great way in which websites can be used to support our photographic projects. Websites can turn photography projects into an interactive and navigation experience that can be hugely interesting for the audience.

http://www.wix.com/xxkirstyeaxx/loosingtouch



Rose Porter- Young Blood (students work)

This series of portraits intends to show the diversity and real identities of youth culture. In today’s society young people are portrayed with a major stereotype in which a high percentage of individuals in reality do not fit into. The people I photographed do exactly that; they are the real youth of today. Each individual I know extremely well from different aspects of my life, all of which are from different places with completely different lifestyles and upbringings. They are how I see youth from my own experiences not how people perceive younger generations. Being a similar age to these individuals I live in their world. To me youth is a seeking of true identity, not the dismissal of social morals.
 I see the uniqueness of youth.

Brad
18
‘“Bradlee is the slice of home. I met him a few years back when he moved to my village and we spend most of our time walking for hours threw and around where we live. He is unsubmissive in most situations and is someone who is driven by the opinions and what he feels is right rather than what other people are wanting from him. He just kind of has this drive and willful way about him which I wish I had about me.” Brad
18
‘“Bradlee is the slice of home. I met him a few years back when he moved to my village and we spend most of our time walking for hours threw and around where we live. He is unsubmissive in most situations and is someone who is driven by the opinions and what he feels is right rather than what other people are wanting from him. He just kind of has this drive and willful way about him which I wish I had about me.”
Charlotte
16
”Charlotte is my closest friend and we are pretty much inseparable ninety percent of the time. She has this inability to find the beauty and adventure in everything, just like when I met her at four years of age. Trust is a hard quality to find within people but I would honestly say she is the only individual I know whom I would truly trust with anything.” Charlotte
16
”Charlotte is my closest friend and we are pretty much inseparable ninety percent of the time. She has this inability to find the beauty and adventure in everything, just like when I met her at four years of age. Trust is a hard quality to find within people but I would honestly say she is the only individual I know whom I would truly trust with anything.”
Bethan
17
“Bethan is like a reflection of myself. I have only known her since starting college yet it feels like I have known her all my life. It is rare to find someone who you are so similar to in so many ways but that’s how I feel we are. I love her edginess and the lighthearted humour she possesses.”  Bethan
17
“Bethan is like a reflection of myself. I have only known her since starting college yet it feels like I have known her all my life. It is rare to find someone who you are so similar to in so many ways but that’s how I feel we are. I love her edginess and the lighthearted humour she possesses.” 
Alice
13
“Ali is my younger sister, and we are complete polar opposites in most ways. She comes across with so much sensitivity and withdrawal from what is going on around her and is only ever herself in situations she is comfortable and secure in. She is only just becoming a young adult and as the youngest of my siblings still holds on to the fact she is the ‘baby’.” Alice
13
“Ali is my younger sister, and we are complete polar opposites in most ways. She comes across with so much sensitivity and withdrawal from what is going on around her and is only ever herself in situations she is comfortable and secure in. She is only just becoming a young adult and as the youngest of my siblings still holds on to the fact she is the ‘baby’.”
Ella
14
“Ella is just bright in every sense of the word. She is my cousin and despite the age gap we get on so well, mainly because despite how young she is she has a great sense of maturity much beyond her years. She is the type of person I wish I could have been at that age. I’m yet to see something she is doesn’t succeed in.” Ella
14
“Ella is just bright in every sense of the word. She is my cousin and despite the age gap we get on so well, mainly because despite how young she is she has a great sense of maturity much beyond her years. She is the type of person I wish I could have been at that age. I’m yet to see something she is doesn’t succeed in.”
Kelly
17
“Kelly is the voice of reason. She, along with Charlotte, are my closest friends and our teenage years have been spent mostly together. She is the one who brings us all back when things get too much or we are not in a great state of mind. I admire the way she is with things, and has a sense of logic which I very much lack. I always feel comfortable when I’m with her as I know whatever I do or say she takes it as it is and me for who I am.” Kelly
17
“Kelly is the voice of reason. She, along with Charlotte, are my closest friends and our teenage years have been spent mostly together. She is the one who brings us all back when things get too much or we are not in a great state of mind. I admire the way she is with things, and has a sense of logic which I very much lack. I always feel comfortable when I’m with her as I know whatever I do or say she takes it as it is and me for who I am.”
Sam
18
“Sam is meaningful in whatever she does. I’ve known her for 6 years in total and in that time nothing has changed. She is still my mother hen. As an only child she always tells me how she feels I am her little sister and because of that is extremely protective of me. She is the type of person that even if you didn’t see for another five years it would only feel like you had been apart a day.” Sam
18
“Sam is meaningful in whatever she does. I’ve known her for 6 years in total and in that time nothing has changed. She is still my mother hen. As an only child she always tells me how she feels I am her little sister and because of that is extremely protective of me. She is the type of person that even if you didn’t see for another five years it would only feel like you had been apart a day.”
Jack
17
“Jack is very much a self-seeking type of person. He is my cousin on my mother’s side and as there was only 15 hours between our births we have grown up together. However despite being so close in age I always find myself in the situation where (in his words) I am “mothering him” but mainly because I just want him to do good for himself. Despite the fact he struggles in finding what he wants from situations he is such a kind hearted person. We argue a lot but despite this I consider him a friend more so than just aother family member.” Jack
17
“Jack is very much a self-seeking type of person. He is my cousin on my mother’s side and as there was only 15 hours between our births we have grown up together. However despite being so close in age I always find myself in the situation where (in his words) I am “mothering him” but mainly because I just want him to do good for himself. Despite the fact he struggles in finding what he wants from situations he is such a kind hearted person. We argue a lot but despite this I consider him a friend more so than just aother family member.”

Monday, 21 May 2012

Alex Law- Truly Wild (students work)


 My concept is something very personnal to me and something I feel very strongly about. I have always been interested in animals and therefore I wanted to create a that body of work that incorporated this. 

      My concept is to show the unhappiness and boredom of animals in captivity, mainly in zoos.  I then conducted research with the aim to find out how you can tell whether an animal is unhappy or bored. I found out that there are certain signs you can look for, these included repeated behaviour, for example pacing up and focusing their gaze on a fixed location or spot for long periods of time. After I learn't these I went to my local zoo for my first test shoot. I then looked for these sign and found many animals that were displaying them. I then captured examples of this occurring. 

       I also tried to create a editing method that reflects my concept. I created a method that is very similar to double exposure. To create my images I turned them into black and white in photoshop and then copied the layer. This meant that I had two identical images. Then I made one slightly bigger and changed the opacity to make it see through. 

This suggests that the animal's character and natural behavior is shrinking because they are so bored and unhappy in their artifiacial enclosures. The effect also makes the animal look like ghost and this suggests that they are ghosts of their former selves be they have lost their character and natural instinct. 
     I wanted to document this issue as best I could because I believe that it is a very imortant issue that must be addressed. Hopefully my images should make the viewer's empathise with the animals and help see things from their perspective.

     While walking around the zoo, I heard many comments from other visiters like "Don't they look funny?", while other were banging on the glass of the enclosures.  Hopeful this body of work will make people realise that these animals are not there for our entetainment  and that they are our equals and not below and not paintings to be viewed just for visual pleasure. 
     








Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Charlotte Neil- Body image/desires


Below is an article from www.lensscratch.com




I first met Charlotte Niel at an exhibition at Rayko Photo
 Gallery in San Francisco some years back and was happy to 
see her again at the reviews. Charlotte lives in Oakland, 
CA, still shoots film and when producing black and white 
images, uses the traditional dark room. She comes to 
photography having lived for 10 years in the south of 
France as a chef on a private yacht and traveling all 
over the globe to exotic and remote locales. Upon her 
return, she worked in finance for many years before 
dedicating herself full time to photography. While much 
of her photographic focus has been on social documentary, 
in particular looking at globalization and modernisation 
and their impact on cultures in developed and under-developed 
societies, her new series, Body Options, explores aging, 
self perception, and ideals of beauty.

Women today are inundated with images of young, thin, perfectly
 proportioned representations of females who advertisers think 
we want to look like. Starting as early as teens, we are encouraged 
to indulge ourselves in expensive beauty and later anti-aging 
strategies. Skilled surgeons allow us to switch out, like a pair 
of shoes, new lips or a nose, if we do not like the ones we are
 wearing today. I began to notice the alarming rate with which my
 peers and women in general are looking to find perfection and I 
was curious as to how women felt about aging in a society that 
keeps growing older closeted. If they had the opportunity, what
 would they change about themselves?

Using humor and compassion, I began a project combining 
idealized concepts of unattainable beauty and everlasting 
youth, juxtaposed against reality, gravity and the passage
 of time. Starting with myself as model to express a point 
of view, the series has expanded to include other women and
 what they would like to change about themselves. These 
photographs are a combination of women letting me into a secret 
part of their lives and then feeling confident enough to share
 it with the outside world. 


After collaborating with each woman on what the ideal 
"improvement” might look like, I created from advertisements 
body overlays, designed to conceal or change perceived 
imperfections. I then fitted the “improvement” with a life-size
 overlay, emphasizing the fact that the change always remains 
separate from the true self. We spent a lot of time laughing, 
talking, and photographing. It was rare that in one shoot they 
felt comfortable enough to sit in front of the camera and not 
be concerned with how they looked or would be perceived. With trust 
came the fun and the image.




This project also reflects different options that the media
 presents in the quest for a “better me.” Publications, plastic 
surgeons, personal trainers, dermatologists, fashion and cosmetics
 all contribute to a huge industry devoted to solutions that can 
guide us on how to look and feel our best, all supported by powerful 
Madison Avenue, Hollywood and peers. Most recently, in a competitive 
job market, the desire for beauty and youth is even more compelling. 




It is my belief that the more we are able to see our real selves,
 the more we will learn to accept those images as the norm -- and 
not need to change a thing. 






Friday, 4 May 2012

Final Tasks before Tuesday/Wednesday Hand in

1.Put “Purpose, Meaning, Context”- Subheading by your concept description in your 2 pieces of research
2.Ensure your final concept description and final images are presented in your sketchbook
3. Include Evaluation in Sketchbook (last piece of work)
4.Try and eliminate blank pages/space
5.Title page- Name, ART2, Exam question chosen
6. Ensure subtitles are present in research and reflection
7.Add an Additional Research photographer to your sketch book

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Where do you go to shop? Brian Ulrich

American photographer Brian Ulrich documents the spaces where middle-class and lower-class westernerers (Americans and Brits) shop for their stuff. The cool objective gaze of the camera cannot help but capture the soulless situations in which people lose themselves during shopping.

In shopping malls and “Big Box” retailers, we discover a universal zombie-state of shoppers (no one looks really alive, alert, excited, engaged – or even enraged). A stupor seems to have fallen over the lot, as they glance with glazed eyes at plastic wrapped flowers, pre-packaged vegetables and piles of synthetic fluff toys. One notices the harsh fluorescent lighting and garish, thoughtless displays that somehow still fuel desire in people who must go out and buy things.






Interestingly Ulrich's body of work has two sections. After showing this gaze and trance consumers are in within stores, shopping with such desire and need, Ulrichs work then goes on to show the life-span of goods and objects and how the older they are the less respect and glamourous their surrounding environment is. He begins to photograph cluttered, cramped and over crowded charity shops. This then starts to discuss how an objects identity can changed depending on its surroundings. The issue of how an objects importance, value and appeal can be artificially created by its surroundings. For example a expensive kettle in a John Lewis shop window, surrounded by expensive french country house furniture. It makes consumers pay the £99 for an object that could be bought for £20. It subconsciously projects the sense that the consumer will be one step closer to owning that French country kitchen if they pay over the odds, as the objects has been injected with connotations due to its surrounding yet artificial and constructed environment.







Rune Lagu by Frank Yamrus

In this series of typological photographs, plastic bottles that house our drinking water come under the camera’s lens.

There are over 3,000 brands of bottled water worldwide, 180 in the United States. In 2006, the global bottled water industry reached $50 billion. 





Just thirty years ago commercially produced bottled water barely existed in the United States. Today, Americans are the leading consumers of bottled water at 32 billion liters per year.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, one in five Americans drinks only bottled water. In a July 2007 article in Fastcompany.com, Charles Fishman theorizes: “Bottled water has become the indispensable prop in our lives and culture…. the food phenomenon of our times…. a chilled plastic bottle of water in the convenience-store cooler is the perfect symbol of this moment in American commerce and culture. It acknowledges our demand for instant gratification, our vanity, our token concern for health.”





Our current relationship with bottled water was born in the 1960s and 1970s as plastic technologies advanced. New plastic bottles made of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) – clear, tasteless and lightweight – alleviated some of the inherent distribution limitations of glass bottles.

Evian, a still water offered in plastic bottles, exploded onto the American market in the early 1980s. The strategy promoting these new plastic bottled waters centered on health, celebrity, exclusivity and portability – a marketing approach so successful that it continues today. Fishman refers to this period of time as the alignment of “convenience and virtue.”





Considering that there is no evidence that bottled water is healthier than tap water; that 40% of bottled water comes from the tap; that 17 million barrels of oil are required to produce the plastic bottles used in the United States in one year; that 86% of plastic water bottles used in the United States become garbage or litter; that bottled water may cost 10,000 times as much as tap water; and that, in terms of marketing dollars, the bottled water’s budget is a drop in the bucket when compared to the carbonated beverage industry, its success seems illogical and unlikely.





Ironically, in the developed world, demographically speaking, bottled water consumers are the folks most concerned with the very environmental and social issues associated with bottled water.

– Frank Yamrus, April 2008