Thursday, 3 October 2013

Catching up

I’ve been neglecting my blog at a vital time – which i guess is one of the “joys” of part time study. Since my last real post I’ve had two weeks holiday without internet access, packed my youngest off to university, picked up my new role as OCASA rep for the Photography courses and tried to get my portfolio and assessment material in order.

Thankfully it’s coming together at last. I think the last big hurdle was getting everything printed. I’ve decided to go quite large – A2 – to ensure that my panoramas are actually tall enough to view. I’ve also decided that Assignment 1 will be digital only – it doesn’t fit with the rest of my prints and will simply distract from the impact of the others if I include it in hard copy. I feel justified in this approach because I think I made quite a leap forward in understanding what these courses are about between Assignments1 and 2.

So what I have now is:

  • A single collage featuring all 12 images from Assignment 2;
  • Assignments 3 and 5 are printed 8 and 12 up respectively on single A2 sheets – in the manner of a Becher typology as discussed previously;
  • The four-shots-from-one-location part of the portfolio (Exercise 15) is covered by my 4 seasons image; and,
  • For the twelve shots representing my response to the four seasons I am  providing 12 shots of the cereal field opposite my house, printed 3 to an A2 sheet in seasonal order. As the group is essentially about the cycle of the seasons this presentation means they can be ordered to start the year at any particular season you wish – I started the cycle at the beginning of autumn – but if someone prefers to view them spring first that’s their choice.

Presented in this way I hope a number of interlocking themes emerge and I’m capturing these thoughts here in the hope that it will help me with a unifying  “artists statement” for the whole collection:

  • an interest in time and capturing or signifying its effects in an image – as in the collage and the portfolio submissions
  • an interest in the sea shore and the boundaries between land, sea and sky as in Assignments 3 and 5. Man’s action at this interface is something I hope to work on in Documentary – subject to the Assignment specs being sufficiently broad.
  • a preference for panoramic formats. I’ve pondered this one long and hard – it is clearly a preference I was developing during People and Place and in the final analysis I think it’s down to the idea that it feels closer to the way we actually see and, particularly in the extreme ratios used in my portfolio, it requires us to move through the picture as we would if it were a ‘real’ view.
  • an idea of using the camera to explore rather than explain or expound. My tutor has regularly asked – “What am I trying to say?” – and sometimes I know, but sometimes I don’t. Sometimes all I can say is “Look at this – this is interesting. I’m not sure why yet, but give me time and a camera and I might be able to find out.” Triple Point (Assignment 5) fall into this category. I’m grasping at an idea about the impact of time and the elements on the little bit of the planet available for us to live on, and perhaps the variety of efforts we put in to tilt the equilibrium in our favour. The idea overlaps with some of the thoughts about permanence and change in the wave series and for the moment that’s all I can say. It has to come of it's own accord.

1 comment:

  1. Very interesting. I've also been neglecting my blog, but having at last completed assignment two I have been reflecting a lot on the next steps. I have been working towards my portfolio in the sense of taking a range of seasonal images as part of my wider explorations but don't have anything quite as tied together as this. I have an emerging idea for it but that could well change. I am also very much someone who uses the camera to explore and make sense of the world so empathise with the final bullet. I think it's great that your tutor pushes you to think and define yourself as I find that really helps progress, but I absolutely agree that you can't force this - it needs to develop organically of its own accord through the work. I'm looking forward to the next chapter!