Unit 2: The Photographic Project – Dreams/Reality
Learning Outcome 1 (LO1): Understand photographic research.
- 1.1 Identify a subject for a photographic project.
- 1.2 Carry out research for a photographic project.
Learning Outcome 2 (LO2) : Be able to produce a photographic project.
- 2.1 Identify photographic resources to complete a photographic project.
- 2.2 Produce photographic images to meet identified goals.
- 2.3 Identify presentational forms for a photographic project.
- 2.4 Assess the photographic project.
Learning Outcome 3 (LO3): Understand photographic practice and health and safety procedures.
- 3.1 Identify and use safe working practices in a photographic project.
Broken, Unfulfilled, Abandoned Dreams, – Final Images
I was interested in ideas around unfulfilled, abandoned dreams, broken dreams and dreams locked away and was attracted by images of bolts, locks, catches, chains and padlocks, windows, doors, buildings and other things in disrepair or having a forgotten air.
These images were taken over a period of time in different locations in Cornwall and Herefordshire. I was looking for buildings that conveyed this atmosphere but it was not possible to just go out and find them but more to collect them as they presented themselves. Hence the use of the iPhone.
The windows in settings of disrepair, with peeling paint and dark interiors, both symbolise the theme of Broken, Abandoned Dreams and Reality and convey their own stories or narrative.
Although there are no people in the photographs I think a number of the images convey a sense of occupation and the people who inhabit them. There is inspiration from Duane Michaels and Mac Adams in the mystery and the narrative elements.
The first image I was drawn to by the overgrown ivy and the curtain partially pulled to one side as if to peer out. A forlorn and forgotten air hung over the building and from just the narrow glimpse past the thin material at the window I could feel a narrative emerge and I felt watched.
This shot was taken on my iPhone XS and is not as clear or sharp as I would want it to be after cropping and enlargement to 12 x 9. I have kept it in as for me it is strong emotive image although not technically a good photograph.
In the second image the viewer could be both outside looking in and inside looking out. The window is barred by wire, the wooden frame is dried out and splintering, the ivy and the shadows encroach creating a good metaphor for an abandoned dream.
In the third image a spade leans against the wall suggesting someone is there and lending a sinister atmosphere combined with the derelict building, rusted pipes, broken panes of glass and boarded windows. I liked the impact of the wide expanse of brickwork and the building / window right in the foreground.
The fourth image gives a view through the window. Cobwebs weave across the inside of the glass and we can just see the white painted wall and bottles inside. Gloom – the reality – pervades while outside the bright flowers and ferns are in contrast and represent the dream. Pipes protrude from the back of building indicating something makeshift. I liked all the textures and contrasts in this image.
The images taken on the iPhone XS do not have the same clarity and sharpness. They were shot on a low ISO, wide aperture with a shutter speed of 1/125.
The images taken on the Fuji X -T20 are taken with ISO 200, aperture f/8 and shutter speeds of 1/640 and 1/80, with a 30 – 40 mm lens.
3.1 Identify and use safe working practices: Some of these locations were isolated and I needed to be aware of my own safety from the point of view of being alone and because of the state of disrepair of the surrounding environment, for example trip hazards, sharp edges, unsafe buildings and rubbish.
Once I had selected the six final images I ensured the ‘Lightroom’ export was set to Colour Space sRGB and I increased the quality of the images – previously set for the blog requirements – to size 4000 / 6000, Pixels resolution to 300 and 100% quality.
I ordered Standard quality prints in both size 9 x 6 and 12 x 9 and made some adjustments to ensure key parts of the image were included.
I plan to use the larger 12 x 9 images although this does expose the quality of the iPhone photographs.
I enjoyed the creativity and possibilities of this task and felt very engaged with the ideas / theme behind my chosen images. They are stand alone images – each with their own story linked by the theme.
I would have preferred to take all of the photographs on the Fuji X – T20 to achieve better quality images and I am now aware of how cropping can compromise quality of the image.
I think the task / final products could be improved by the use of a wider variety of skills, for example movement and maybe it could be more interesting if there was a sequence or story to the group. I think it is right that you do not actually see a person.
The technical aspects of using the camera, as opposed to the creative, is the area I think I need to develop most. I am quite proficient in using ‘Lightroom’ for post production and I am increasing my knowledge of ‘Photoshop’.
I have learnt that in cropping the image and then raising the quality / size of the image for printing the sharpness of the image is significantly compromised as the process means the computer fills in the blanks between the pixels available. I have learnt to use processing software, eg Lightroom or Photoshop, to find out the pixels and the appropriate size for maximum quality of the final image before resizing.