I felt that in the webinar there was a strong focus on “what we want to do” or sort of putting us in defined boxes in terms of the kind of photography work we pursue. I believe I’m at a stage where I still need to explore before I narrow my focus. I sensed that there was an expectation that I was further ahead in my work than I am. The time restrain was also a challenge which I would have loved to avoid had I had the availability to join the other time slot.
“Shoot first, ask questions later.” The notion that a concept can be developed after the photographs have been made is not entirely new to me, but was framed in a novel and refreshing way. I have, in the past, looked through my archive with the intent of identifying patterns and been surprised when I’ve noticed that indeed they exist. I’ve felt some phoniness when doing so, like what I was trying to piece together wasn’t legitimately a concept or a story or a project. Boris Mikhailov’s project “Red” really brought this idea to a different level, making me feel like I have more permission than I realised I had in the creation of my projects.
I’ve learnt to lean on photographers that came before me. I’ve spent more time this week looking at inspiring works than I normally do.
Shadow work: in the past year I’ve embraced the notion that a lot of my photographic work is auto-biographical. In terms of mental health, I’ve been lately exploring some darker sides of my psyche, trying to understand where these come from and how I can acknowledge their existence without succumbing to them. How I can heal past trauma and use this awareness to bring more intentionality into my life. Looking into my archive, I’ve identified some images where I’ve intentionally photographed my shadow, which I now see as a metaphorical representation of my inner darkness.
Gemma’s double exposure portrait has reminded me of the magic of this kind of work. I’ve never done double exposures on film and have since decided to experiment with that. Coming into contact with Duane Michals’s work has also been important as I can see interesting ways in which I can explore double portraiture with my mother, adding a layer of meaning to photographing her dementia. A quick research into Duane Michals led me to John Deakin and a plethora of inspiring double exposure work.
https://www.britishartstudies.ac.uk/issues/issue-index/issue-1/deakin-double-exposures – accessed Oct 6
Sep 30, 2022