The Photographers’ Gallery is dedicated to photography and has collection from the latest to historical artist.
We visited Roger Mayne’s exhibition that includes his work from the 1950s and 1960s. It involves communities from London and outside the capital. He manages to capture street life as well as range of dynamic angles and abstract forms of urban environments.
The visit to this gallery made me think more on the idea of why today’s society has an interest in old photos. I have seen many street photography that includes people but it does not give me that same feel as I do when look at vintage material. I believe everyone has a collection of old photographs that have a great meaning to them personally. There may be some that do not. However, in perhaps 50 years they will worth a lot.
This is why in the class of this workshop, we were taught not to think so much when we go out to shoot. Because no matter what you photograph is will hold some sort of memory that is different to something digitally produced. Film is personal because it is something that can be stored in a more physically way.
We also visited another exhibition by Diane Lixenberg. Her images were powerful because they were printed on a large scale and were all shot by film. It amazed me how possible it was to create sharp images in the dark room and not digitally.
I will be looking at post-holiday blues, as it something that I have recently felt and that I believe most of go through when returning from a good get away.
The resources I will be using are photographs that I have taken during a trip to Sicily.
The idea was to manipulate the photos in a way that portrays a memory that you do not want to forget but the truth is you will forget some parts or perhaps may never get another chance to visit.
I have continued to experiment with different ways to show my idea including colours within the image and the manipulation.
Today I joined others in a 5 week workshop based on photography. Eddie Otchere, a well known British photographer will be running the course and teaching us the route of photography.
The first class was taken at Photofusion in Brixton which a photography resource centre. We were given a film camera each and told to shoot anything in Brixton. The idea was not to think to much of what you want to photograph, more on just getting out there and being open minded.
When we returned we had the opportunity to develop film. I haave only done this once before and it was great to have the chance to try it again. But then I remembred why I did not like doing the process. The idea is to develop the film in complete darkness, either in a changing bag or in a pitch bag room. The method is simple once you get the hang of it.
Once the film was developed we left them to dry and took a tour of the dark room. I am familiar with the equipment in this room and couldn’t wait to start and refresh my knowledge. We created contact sheets from our film. This is an important step to do, as you want to be able to see what photos are the best, just how you would do digitally.
It is fun being able to be more in control of how the image will appear. You do not feel restricted by technology.
After reviewing the work I have done so far, I have decided to chose one diary instead of using text from a range as this would make more sense when displaying the images. Since then I have been working on putting the right image with the right text. I did not want the text to be completely random. Although it would have still had a wildlife and explorer feel, I felt that the text should link to what is shown.
So I have been looking more at individual words from the diary, as well as developing on font and colour.
I have also tried making some words larger.
Visually the work with a paragraph of text with enlarged words looks pleasing but I am uncertain of having much text as it might be a lot for the audience to take in. Therefore I began to cut down on this and playing with sentences.
The idea was to have fonts that gives us a reminder of an old diary. The initial idea was to use a type writer font that is still readable. For the image just above, I played with another font that had a bigger weight and was more dynamic in shape. However I felt this to be quite distracting. The colour I do like because it was influenced be the colour palette of the photo.
The image with the blue text was another experimentation with colour. Because I was focusing more on earthy colours, I wanted to try with brighter ones.
After Tuesdays tutorial, the feedback was positive on my idea. I now have to develop the project more, as well as how they will be displayed as final pieces.
The things I need to develop is text and composition. For example some words could be larger to communicate something important. The colour of the text needs to compliment the image as well as being able to be readable by the audience. I am still working with what specific text I will be using for each photo, as it might be easier to use one diary or one specific person so that it is simple for others to understand. The way in which I display the work will also have to understandable.
The colour was important as I wanted there to be more of an earthy tone to represent the zoo and its enclosures. Not only this, but I wanted to show an old diary effect that are similar to the old pages.
The layout too, is inspired by how a person would write in a diary or a journal. Their thoughts would often be written in a carefree manner.
I came to a standstill because I was unsure if I wanted to just showcase the photos or add text with them. I had to think of things that linked or reminded me of the zoo. I began to think of it’s history and the types of people that work there or have had an impact on discovering new findings.
I decided to find diaries written,and quotes, by explorers or zoologist and take out sections to place with my photos. A mood is set when the naturalistic image with text that involves an adventure or facts/opinions about the outside world.