- An image of a synthetic “place” such as Disney World, Las Vegas, a Hollywood set, a diorama, etc. - I picture something Lady Gaga-esque. Flashy/Sparkly/Bright, exotic, unexpected and exciting.
- An image of a fantasy/fictitious environment concocted from your imagination - I imagine a scene that is eerie and dreamlike but bright. It is cloudy/foggy and the world is made of strange things, similar to an Alice in Wonderland or Charlie and the Chocolate Factory scene.
- An image of a placeless space such as the Internet, cell phones, e-mail, e-bank, surveillance, etc. - I imagine an abstract image that captures the radio waves, cables, air space, etc. that are used to send each of these forms of communication from one person to another.
- An image of a public space - I immediately imagine a park, filled with trees, benches, and lots of people. The sun is shining brightly and the sky is bright blue.
- An image of a private space - I imagine a bedroom. A place very personal to an individual, a place to get away to.
- An in-between space that brings to mind one of the following ideas: nomadic lifestyles, displacement, rootlessness, out-of-placeness, boundaries, movement, expansion, etc. - I picture the changing scene in one's life as they grow up from childhood to adulthood. One moment you are surrounded by toys and no responsibilities. The next moment you are surrounded by bills and a full time job.
Sunday, February 27, 2011
Monday, February 21, 2011
Image 001 ‘Intimate’ – This seemed to be the photograph that got the most suggestions for improvement. The print version of this image turned out darker than the image appears on a computer screen so much of the light was lost. It was suggested that the shadow on the arm/neck area was sort of confusing because it blended in so much with the shadows in the background. If I could reshoot this photo, I would probably make sure that there was some amount of light or a reflector was used to aim light towards that area so the detail was not lost.
Image 002 ‘Gender/Sexuality’ – For this image the main suggestion was that the few distracting elements in the background be taken out so that the focus was completely on the subject. The framing of this photo works particularly well, because only seeing half the eyes sort of creates a greater mystery as to the gender of the subject. The haphazardly created mustache also adds to the photo in a sense that it seems to be a comic play on the topic of gender/sexuality rather than a serious commentary.
Image 003 ‘Slow Shutter Speed/Self Portrait’ – There were less comments from my peers on this image than on the others. I think that it works well as a self portrait because it is so abstracted. I think this would be an awesome concept to take and use for a series of self portraits done in a slow shutter speed. In addition, I think that altering the background and lighting to create a completely different feeling based on the self portrait would be an interesting concept.
Image 004 'Fast Shutter Speed' – In this image the motion is captured well, but there is not too little or too much snow in the frame. The trees work really well as a frame for the subject, instead of just having the subject in front of a non descriptive background. I could see this image as part of a series documenting a snow day or some other fun winter event. I think the most important element in it is the sense of frozen time that it creates so it would be important to carry that theme throughout a series of similar pictures.
Sunday, February 20, 2011
“I believe in the imagination. What I cannot see is infinitely more important than what I can see.” Duane Michals
I like this quote, and I somewhat agree. However, I don't think that what you cannot see is MORE important, I think that it is just as equally important. In order to have a basis to let your imagine jump off of, you need to be able to see at least something in the photograph. If you couldn't see anything, you wouldn't have a photograph to begin with.
“Photography, as we all know, is not real at all. It is an illusion of reality with which we create our own private world.” Arnold Newman
I also somewhat agree with this quote. Photography can play tricks on your mind and make you believe that you see something that you really don't because it captures such a small fraction in time. We create our own 'private world' from a photograph because each of our experiences allows us to take away something different from a photo and to interpret the emotions and feelings it conveys differently.
Thursday, February 17, 2011
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
In 1967, Smithson became fascinated with dump trucks, which he witnessed moving earth and rock in industrial areas in New Jersey. Inspired, he began to create site and non-site land art. Site art was work created in a specific outdoor location. An example of this is Smithson's work titled, Spiral Jetty, which is located in Great Salt Lake, Utah.
Non-site work could be displayed anywhere, including a gallery. It often consisted of a photograph of a site work alongside actual material that would have been used to create a piece of land art.
Alfred Stieglitz was born in Hoboken, New Jersey in 1864 to a rather affluent family. He attended school in Germany to become a mechanical engineer. While in school he experimented with photography and eventually went to New York in 1890 to begin his photography career. He was famous for his desire to prove that photography was a valid medium. He believed that photos were equivalent to painting or sculpture in terms of their ability to convey artistic expression. In 1893 he was offered and he accepted the job of co-editor of The American Amateur Photographer magazine. In May of 1896 he successfully joined the two photography clubs of New York the Society of Amateur Photographers and the Camera Club to form The Camera Club of New York. The Camera Club went on to produce a magazine by the name of Camera Notes, which quickly rose in popularity around the globe. In 1902 he began printing the visual magazine Camera Work. During the length of his extensive career Stieglitz produced more than 2,500 mounted photographs.
This photograph, taken in 1931 from Stieglitz's 13th floor apartment of the Shelton Hotel exemplifies Stieglitz's documentation of the changing New York City skyline. Propelled by his fascination with prolonged viewings, he illustrated the play of light and shadow on the buildings of the city, particularly this view of Radio City Music Hall, and what detail is revealed through the act of looking.
Monday, February 14, 2011
For this image the cropping/framing was done with the intent that it would show less of the subject and therefore give away less clues as to the gender of the subject. Also, so that the focus was on the subject and not the background elements, which would have been distracting. In creating this image I wanted to create a play on questions about gender and sexuality. The use of the obviously fake mustache makes the photo less serious (almost comical) although it can still raise such questions. I think that this photograph could be compared with the works of photographers who have taken photos that invoke discussion and cover controversial topics.
This picture came about largely by accident. This was used for both the slow shutter speed prompt and the self portrait prompt. I initially wasn't expecting to create such an eerie photo. I think that the perspective being from a little higher up than the subject adds to the eerieness, because we're looking down at the subject as if it's something less than human. I also think that it seems like the subject is fading is and out of consciousness, maybe really tired or overwhelmed. I think that it works well for a self portrait because there's a time when we all feel kind of like that so the image then becomes relateable to its audience.
Sunday, February 13, 2011
When I imagine a familiar place I imagine a place where I spend a lot of time, like my apartment or a friend's house. I would use lighting to convey the feeling of a familiar and welcome place such as my home. Softer, warmer light would make a photograph of a place seem like it was warm and inviting. When I imagine a faraway place I think of somewhere that no one, or hardly anyone has ever been to such as a deserted island. I think that the content of a photograph of such a place would be enough to convey the idea that it was a faraway and 'untouched' place.
When I think of the ways in which humans interact with the environment, the first thing that comes to mind is that humans are actually destroying the environment. I think of the countless times I have seen so much garbage floating alongside the freeway or caught in a corner of a parking lot. If I had to create a piece of 'land art' I would use garbage to create something organic such as a tree, etc. in order to create a statement about what our carelessness and waste is doing to the world we live in.
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Memory of a Photograph:
The photograph I remember most is a photo of me, my dad, and my older brother that has always been my mom's favorite. The picture was taken on a Sunday morning after we got home from church. My dad was laying on the floor reading the paper and my brother was laying curled up on top of him, then I was laying curled up on on top of my brother. I have no idea how we came to be in such a goofy pose but it's definitely a unique picture. Considering I was about 1.5 or 2 when the picture was taken and my brother was about 6 or 7 I have changed A LOT and I imagine a reenactment wouldn't quite be possible and it definitely wouldn't be as cute as when we were little.
Memory of a Place - The first place that comes to mind is my Grandparents house in the upper peninsula. I remember their house by memory but there are also pictures of my family in front of it as well. It is a small, white, one-level house surrounded by several acres of wooded property. There was always a bright red hummingbird feeder in front of the big picture window because my grandma liked to watch the hummingbirds in the Summer. I'm not sure what it would look like today because its been many years since my grandparents have sold the place. I imagine it as still being white and having a giant picture window but I'm sure that the hummingbird feeder is no longer there since that was something that was unique to my grandparents. I think that its also possible that the current owners have added on to the house because it was really small. In terms of other colors that come to mind I picture really green grass and blue sky because we only ever went in the middle of summer when the weather was beautiful. There was always lots of family around. including my aunt and uncle and older cousins.
Saturday, February 5, 2011
Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Image 001 ‘Light’ – I think that the lighting of this image is working well. I really like the contrast that is created by the parts of the jar that the light didn’t hit and the part of the jar where the light is most concentrated. If I could change one thing about it I would angle the jar to create a more dramatic diagonal line because I think that the slight diagonal line creates some interest. Like I said in part one of the written statement, if I could redo this shoot I would play around with different containers to see how the light looked reflected in to them. Ie. glass versus plastic, a drinking cup/glass versus a bottle, etc. I would also use different kinds of lighting to see what variation in effects I could create.
Image 002 ‘Burnt Out’ – This is one of my favorite images but there are a still a number of things that I would change about it/redo. To begin, I would have someone to help me because lighting the matches and trying to take the picture was really difficult. I ended up having to set the timer so that I could light the matches all at the same time. I would also change the composition. At first I like the diagonal that the image was taken on but I now find it to be distracting so I would change that and the framing a little. I would also experiment with when I lit the matches more if I didn’t have to focus on doing that and taking the picture.
Image 003 ‘Sparty Wants You’ – This image is probably my least favorite of my 3 final images. I really like the concept behind it but I didn’t quite execute the technical aspects of it the way I had planned in my head. I wanted the finger to appear more in the foreground and the face to appear more in the background, almost to a point where they seemed disconnected. If I redid this image I would focus on trying to create this greater sense of depth in order to create a stronger image. I also think I would have experimented with a similar concept for different organizations and groups to see what I liked best. My favorite part of this image is the framing. I think that the amount of the subject that is in the frame is perfect.
Nikki S. Lee was born in South Korea in 1970 as Lee Seung-Hee. She got her B.F.A. at Chung-Ang University in Korea and then moved to New York where she attended the Fashion Institute of Technology. She then attended New York University where she got her M.A. in photography.
Lee is known for her numerous series of photographs that document her exploration of identity and culture. She observes specific cultures and groups, adopts their styles, and then approaches them. Her experiments cover all walks of life and include people of different ages, races, socio-economic status, sexual orientation, and hobbies. Once she integrates herself with a group, she stays with them for a couple of weeks, participating in their daily lifes. A partner takes pictures of her/the group when she instructs them to and she then selects which pictures fit the series she was working on. All of the photographs are taken with a manual 'snapshot' camera.
The technical aspects (framing, composition, lighting, etc.) of Lee's photographs are unique to the culture of the individual she has transformed in to. Her photos arent always of the best quality because of the equipment they are taken with but I think that this adds to the photographs. They seem more amateur in a way and therefore make them seem more believable. A studio version of the same subjects and setting would be aesthetically pleasing because the lighting could be just right and the photographers could take hundreds of shots of a single scene in order to get just the right picture. That however, would take away from the picture because these pictures give us a sliver of the life of these people.
I love Lee's work because it is so different from any thing else that resembles it. Countless photographers seek to make a commentary on identity or to capture individuals in their own 'habitat'. Lee takes this one step further and goes outside of the box by transforming herself into one of them. Her transformations are not very simple either. To go from a Korean woman to a blonde Ohio woman to a 60+ year old woman AND be believable is amazing. At first glance you wouldn't have any clue that she didn't fit in with the people she was photographed with.
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Original Image: Margrethe Mather, Billy Justema in Man's Summer Kimono, 1923
Born in March 1886 as Emma Caroline Youngreen. She spent her young life selling her body for cash. She is most closely associated with an American photographer, Edward Weston, who she met and began working with in 1913. Mather helped to take Weston's traditional style of pictorialism to photographs of more modernity.
My Recreation: In the original image I was most drawn to the stomach and the awkward hand positions. It seems as if the cloth and the hands were creating a frame for the stomach. For my recreation I zoomed in more on the body and didn't worry about adding cloth or any other props since that's not what I wanted the picture to focus on.