Cindy Sherman Inspired

Posted in Portraits with tags , on March 7, 2012 by moetdigitalphotography

In 2002 artist Cindy Sherman started photographing clowns. ‘I came to clowns,’ she says, ‘to show the complex emotional abysses of a painted smile.’ The photographs feature riotous make up, flamboyant costumes and digitally manipulated backgrounds of intense colours and patterns creating visual lushness. Sherman explores the intensities of different emotions from hysterically happy or intensely nasty to the sadness of the character behind the face paint and scary clown image. The photos are self portraits, as are all her works, which she disguises well.

Cindy Sherman

Cindy Sherman

Cindy Sherman

I was deeply inspired by Sherman’s clown images and decided to create my own. Instead of photographing myself like Sherman, I had someone model for me. Similarly to Sherman I wanted to explore the emotions of clowns, ones people stereotypically link with the clown image. I had my model laugh, stare, look angry and withdrawn, in order to explore the scope of emotions demonstrated by clowns. I made the images sickly colourful to increase intensity.

'Clown' Sophie Moet

In this photograph I overlapped two images: the clown laughing insanely and the clown staring straight into the camera. I was inspired by Cecil Beaton’s early portraiture works and decided to emulate his style. Beaton’s photographs were black and white and his subjects merged and overlapped to create a blurred overlapping effect. I think this effect adds intensity and bizarreness.

'Circus Memories' Sophie Moet

'It' Sophie Moet

In the photographs above I used layers to create a scratched film effect.  I also used a circus lights layer to emphasise the clown theme. I wanted the photographs to be moody and dark despite the bright colours. I had my model look micschevious and quite scary as he peered round the brick wall and looked down into the camera. I want the audience to feel quite intimidated, questioning what the clown’s next move will be.

'Clown 2' Sophie Moet

'Clown 3' Sophie Moet

As many people are scared of just a single clown, the thought of more than one must be terrifying. So I decided to use different photographs of the same clown to create the illusion of there being multiple clowns in one image, thus creating a surreal effect shown above.

'Scream' Sophie Moet

Duane Michals and Cindy Sherman Inspired

Posted in Portraits with tags , , on March 7, 2012 by moetdigitalphotography

By turning the camera on herself, Cindy Sherman has built a name as one of the most respected photographers of the late twentieth century. Although, the majority of her photographs are pictures of her, however, these photographs are most definitely not self-portraits. Rather, Sherman uses her body as the medium she uses to raise bigger issues. It is not Sherman we see but a character. It is through these ambiguous and eclectic photographs that Sherman has developed a distinct signature style. I was inspired by Sherman’s photographs as she embodies so many different characters. Therego, I decided to photograph people in different well known disguises.

Cindy Sherman

Cindy Sherman

I was inspired by Duan Michals, an American photographer who creates photo sequences and creates photographs that consists of multiple images, which are often layout separately to convey unravelling events or movement. He also creates photogarphs that include text creating quite textile pieces, examining emotions and philosophy.

'Salvation' Duane Michals

Duane Michals

I had my model dress up as Charlie Chaplin and added quotes and used different templates to create the following images;

'Life would be wonderful' Sophie Moet

Inspired by photo sequences I created this image showing an unravelling event: Charlie Chaplin happily smoking his cigar and looking out the window then Chaplin being rudely interrupted from his enjoyment by someone outside. I then used a quote of Charlie Chaplin ‘Life would be wonderful if people would leave you alone’ which links to my photo sequence.

'A mans true character' Sophie Moet

In many of Duane Michals photographs, his images are square or resemble postcards. I decided to emulate this style and used a postcard template shown above. Again I used a Charlie Chaplin quote that linked nicely with image, ‘A mans true character comes out when he is drunk’.

Good and Bad Landscape Photographs

Posted in Add+Vantage Module Homework, Landscapes with tags , , , on February 18, 2012 by moetdigitalphotography

In the series, “Landscapes for the Homeless” which begun in 1988 and finished in 1991, Anthony Hernandez documented the out of the way places the homeless retreated to.  In the series he closes in on minute details such as the homeless’ possessions, revealing a persons presence through photographing the landscape. Whilst photographing these areas Hernandez made sure that no one was around, so as not to disrupt the life of its inhabitants. Viewed at a distance, the images appear to be photographs of the natural landscape. Upon close examination the details of habitation reveal themselves.  This made me realise how important and what great impact the little things can do in an image. I believe these photographs to be great examples of landscape photography. The photos offer deep and meaningful documentation, revealing the homeless’ terrible living conditions, their presence in the landscape and their possessions.

“Landscapes for the Homeless” Anthony Hernandez

“Landscapes for the Homeless” Anthony Hernandez

“Landscapes for the Homeless” Anthony Hernandez

“Afghanistan: Chronotopia” by Simon Norfolk, is a series of landscape photographs of Afghanistan during the war.  Afghanistan has been ravaged by war for more then twenty years and in this series Norfolk has documented the devastating effects the war has had on Afghanistans beautiful architecture, buildings and landscapes. I love the images and for me are good examples of landscape photography. They are powerfully beautiful despite the destruction. The photographs educate the viewer about the turmoil and severe genocide this exquisite place has encountered.

“Afghanistan: Chronotopia” Simon Norfolk

“Afghanistan: Chronotopia” Simon Norfolk

“Afghanistan: Chronotopia” Simon Norfolk

“Afghanistan: Chronotopia” Simon Norfolk

Gerhard Richter is known for his “out of focus” trademark. I chose some of his out of focus landscapes as bad examples of landscape photography. I find them quite pointless and mundane. I like photographs to be compelling, with a story like those by Simon Norfolk and Anthony Hernandez.

"Near Hubbelrath" Gerhard Richter

Frames, Nixon and Summer

Posted in Lectures and Responses on December 8, 2011 by moetdigitalphotography

By Nicholas Nixon

In class we spoke about different ways in which we frame our photographs. I especially liked this photo (above) by Nicholas Nixon of his wife, Beverly Brown (Bebe) and his child. The photo is very simple and focuses on minute details making it even more intimate and special. You can imagine the proud mother smiling down on her newborn cradled in her arms. This is how we would usually see such an image with both subjects in full frame. However, Nixon has focused on the outskirts of the frame, and the small details thus capturing a beautiful image, a smile and the babies’ hand.

I than went onto to look at some of Nixon’s other work. “The Brown Sisters” is a series in which since 1975  to the present day Nixon has took a photograph of his wife and her three sisters every year. Using a large eight-by-ten-inch view camera positioned at eye level, he photographs the women in the same order from left to right: Heather, Mimi, Bebe, and Laurie. Although he makes multiple exposures, Nixon selects only one photograph to represent the women each year. I personally love this series. Nixon has created a compelling investigation of portraiture and the changes through time. It shows the gradual ageing of the women, changes in fashion and location and maybe even their changing relationships with one another. Below are some examples.

"The Brown Sisters" Heather, Mimi, Bebe and Laurie, 1975

"The Brown Sisters" 1985

"The Brown Sisters" 1995

"The Brown Sisters" 2005

"The Brown Sisters" 2010

As you look through the selection of photographs it’s quite clear which of the four women is Nixon’s wife. Bebe seems more relaxed and smiley compared to her sisters who seem more tense and wary of the camera. This made me think of how you can capture a feeling or a relationship someone has or a person’s presence without actually having to include the person in the photo.

I than took some photos of one my nieces and brother. In the photos I like how my niece (Summer) and my brothers facial expressions are the same, or the direction in which their eyes are looking are the same. I made Summer my focal point but kept parts of my brother in the frame. I think this insinuates the bond they have, a father and daughter relationship.

Summer, 2011

Summer, 2011

Summer, 2011

Halloween 2011

Posted in Lectures and Responses on December 5, 2011 by moetdigitalphotography

After looking at both Martin Parr and Peter Dench’s work, I was inspired to emulate their style and focus on British culture. Although, I don’t really like their style of photography I thought it would be interesting to experiment with. I love working in black and white so it would be a chance to expand my photographic work.

Halloween is a big part of western culture and for us Brits it is a chance for us to go out in fancy dress and to get tipsy/drunk to numb the pain of being seen out in a dress…just me? No but really, it is tradition to go out in fancy dress, so I took some photos on Halloween. I tried to enhance the colours in my photos to make them seem garish like Dench or Parrs’ works but didn’t want to change anything else. I experimented in how I framed my photos e.g. long shots, close ups…

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

Halloween 2011

It’s A Brit Thing

Posted in Lectures and Responses on December 5, 2011 by moetdigitalphotography

Martin Parr captures the quirkiness of day-to-day life in Britain. With his interest in “ordinary people doing ordinary things” he manages to extract the extraordinary from the seemingly everyday. Parr focuses on British culture, which is exaggerated through garish colours and unusual perspectives. The bright colours and somewhat exaggerated scenarios make the imagery very entertaining yet quite sickening. It’s like Parr is making fun of British culture but at the same time showing how us British live and what we value. I love how his photographs make a laugh at us whilst showing the truth about national characteristics. Parr highlights the comedic side of British traditions and heritage such as fish and chips, bakeries, drinking and the British seaside.

I looked at Martin Parr’s “The Last Resort” series which records the “great British seaside” in all it’s garish glory. Taken at the height of the Thatcher years “The Last Resort” is famously controversial. I found the photos to be particularly humorous and honest about British culture.

The Last Resort, Brighton, 1985

I found this photo very entertaining. It seems to be a very British thing to run to the beach, towel and suncream in hand,  as soon as there’s a glimmer of hope for sunshine. We all try to squeeze into our tiny yet always overcrowded beaches all in hope to catch some rays.

The Last Resort, Brighton, 1985

Again I find this photo very funny and it’s all down to the way Parr has framed the shot. In reality, this child is probably well looked after and spoiled by it’s guardians/parents but thanks to this photo it looks like wherever the child’s guardian actually is, their more interested in the gamblers. Unaware the child is blissfully wondering around, entertaining itself. Good ol’ british parenting eh?

I than went onto look at Peter Dench. Similarly to Martin Parr, Peter Dench also photographs British culture, using garish colours and equally garish subject matters such as binge drinking and teenage love. I looked at DrinkUk which shows us Brits in all our drunken grandeur!

DrinkUk

DrinkUk

Exposure and Manual Settings

Posted in Lectures and Responses on December 3, 2011 by moetdigitalphotography

EXPOSURE-HOW MUCH LIGHT THERE IS

Brightness depends on:

SHUTTER SPEED-A high shutter speed e.g 500=less exposure

-A lower shutter speed e.g 1=more exposure

APERTURE-The aperture stop of a photographic lens can be adjusted to control the amount of light

reaching the film or image. It also determines where the detail will be in the image.

-The aperture are the F stops on the camera lens

-A high F stop e.g 22=less exposure and more detail

-A low F stop e.g 4=more exposure and less detail (blurred  background, focused foreground)

ISO– Film speed e.g 100 or 400 is the measure of photographic film’s sensitivity to light.

DEPTH OF FIELD

DOF is the distance between the nearest and farthest objects in a scene that can be exceptionally sharp (in focus) or out of focus. For example, F4 would mean the foreground or object would be in focus and the background would be out of focus. Whilst F22 would mean everything would be in focus.

Below are some examples of different manual settings I used to create some self portraits.

F4 Shutter Speed 8

F4 Shutter Speed 8

F4 Shutter Speed 60

F4 Shutter Speed 125

F22 Shutter Speed 2

F22 Shutter Speed 125