Representation – Formation of Ideas

Getting started...

In Week 1 (week ending 23rd January 2015) we were introduced to the Representation brief – to produce a colour portrait of which ‘portrait’ may be interpreted in its widest sense; ‘photography concerned with portraying people with emphasis on their identity as individuals’. For this brief we are to use a Medium Format camera and 120 colour film – something I have never used before and I am keen to get to grips with. We were shown some work form the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2013 winner, Clare Hewett. An image that has really inspired me by this artist is the image below of the singer/actress Charlotte Ritchie. Hewett has used a double exposure/layering technique to capture the identity and a representational image of this actress – it is a picture within a picture. I like how the close up image is the more faded of the two – it feels that the Ritchie is keeping her distance from us as the clearer image is further away. The poses are also slightly different between the two exposures seemingly she is preoccupied with something else happening outside of the window and then within the room but interestingly not concerned by the presence of the photographer. The fact that you can’t see the reasons for these preoccupations makes the final image more interesting and engages your curiosity. Hewett has also followed the important rule of framing the subject allowing Charlotte Ritchie sufficient to look into space – both to the left and the right hand sides. This gives the overall image a balanced look without feeling too cramped.

image

Clare Hewitt – ‘Charlotte Ritchie’ as published in The Independent Magazine, May 2014

 

As part of my A-Level Photography studies I also created a series of multiple exposure imagery using the power of Adobe Photoshop Layering functionality. Photoshop allowed me to be in charge of the final outcome of my artwork – I could tweak the results until my desired effect was realised. Using this technique created some surreal and fascinating imagery and I was fortunate that my work was selected for an exhibition held at the Headquarters of Fujitsu UK and Ireland in London, 2014. Still, I did feel using Photoshop ‘tricks’ to create these images seem a little like cheating. What I really wanted to do was to explore ‘real’ in-camera double exposures but never had the opportunity or equipment to do so – until now. Here is a mindmap of my initial thoughts and ideas. Let the fun begin!!!

Double Exposure Portraits


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