Monday, 19 March 2012

Life Cycle SLR Photographs.

These first few photographs were taken of baby shoes, the shoes being isolated adds to eeriness of then maybe being abandoned, or a child gone missing, could tell a story of a child being mourned for ect... Relates to life cycles because of the sizing showing the first steps of life. They were taken on a film camera but it wasn't a proper SLR, it was an auto focus older retro camera, We figured out after developing the film that the focus couldn't have worked too well because the majority of photographs on this film were out of focus so this wasn't too successful but I did quite like the theme of it. I would have taken it further but I later took more interest in SLR photographs that I took further below.
Test strip for one of my photographs of the shoes. Split the time in seconds, 3 worked best, high contrast would be needed so that it doesn't look under exposed.
This photograph was slightly out of focus, also water stained but I quite liked its effect, it was quite old and ruined looking.
Main attraction in photograph is out of focus, shoes in background aren't, not too keen on this composition, too much black, should probably dodge it slightly during exposure.
Favourite composition, shadows work well in contrast with shoes but could have been perhaps around 0.2 seconds more exposed.
over-exposed, too dark, not a good photograph but could have been good in composition.
Again out of focus but could have been better if I had used a slightly more advanced camera where the focus would have been in my control.
All the photographs below were taken on a film SLR, I could focus them myself and chose the aperture appropriate so I was more confident with these.
Here are bumble bees, dragon flies and a garden snake preserved in glass pots, shows the end of life, dead species. I liked the idea of photographing them because of the theme and set up the composition in their order of height. The aperture for this whole film was kept of either 2.8 or 5.6 and shutter speed fairly quick on 200 so the image was captured exactly as it was because no movement was involved.
I preferred this one because the snake is the most horrifying and that is what is kept in focus, I focus fully on it so it was the first thing you are drawn to in this composition.
This vase above had an interesting result, The white background and the light colours of the flowers blended to a sort of grey, they look unreal, even sketched, exposure time for development was around 2 seconds which probably wasn't enough in terms of contrast but I liked the way it turned out.

Exposure time 2.5, slightly more contrast, similar effect to the flowers before. paper like effect. They look alive with a healthy texture but also dying.
I then started to photograph a skeleton on the art room and later involved people to show life cycles in terms of humans, our bones underneath or death. Test strip above showed that about 3/3.5 seconds worked best, even though it was slightly moved resulting in a blur.
Above is an over exposed print, Although I liked it because the bones still shone through they just looked darker. Composition shows dead flowers in the skeleton (dead human) and somebody alive works well.
My favourite, perfect contrast, like a wedding photo composition. Inspired by a video of my favourite band where a member dances with the skeleton.
Person out of focus in background compared to skeleton, shows both appearances of people. Links with Rankin in terms of showing what humans are underneath.
Shadow behind looks like skeleton has hair, humorous composition.
Same photo as first, perfectly exposed though.
Close up of faces, looking away.
Skeleton has captured her.
Close up of skeleton and humans hands.
Friend pose of human and skeletons.
Angrier pose.
Skeleton gaining power.
Close of of skull, could have done with more contrast.
over the shoulder, out of focus view added to effect, bones look good contrasted.
Low angle, rose in mouth.
Skeleton stares directly into camera here.
Further away, dead roses added for effect.
Profile shot.
More lower shots...
Roses are the main focus point here for experimentation.
A favourite, skeleton staring with rose.

Andy Goldsworthy analysis.

Andy Goldsworthy, born 1956, British scultor, photographer and environmentalist, his works consists of natural landscapes, art works produced by only him and the nature whether this be a picture or 3 dimentional sculpture. He works from his home in Scotland.

'Incredible Serpentine Tree Roots', a sculpture, piece of art and photograph in one. Goldsworthy's background interest in nature, and here his own opinion towards his works and interests links this free handed process of using the mud/sand to create this - "I enjoy the freedom of just using my hands and "found" tools--a sharp stone, the quill of a feather, thorns. I take the opportunities each day offers: if it is snowing, I work with snow, at leaf-fall it will be with leaves; a blown-over tree becomes a source of twigs and branches. I stop at a place or pick up a material because I feel that there is something to be discovered. Here is where I can learn." Created for art, made in YEAR, fairly modern, the only way you can tell this is because of the professional photo quality which must have been used from modern technology, otherwise the natural creation could have been produced at any time because of Goldsworthy's simple yet accurate process. It can link with history, because of the ancient tree which has obviously taken a good century to grow, it shows unseen life because the roots not only look amazing but were created in the way in which they are seen underground, showing the gradual life cycle of the tree growing. Goldsworthy's works differ from each other so this definitely comes across as his own movement and with more individuality than anything else in this modern period, he works with whatever he can and whatever takes his fancy rather than following anything specific.

The process of the work was Goldsworthy sculpturing the roots with his hands, using the sand which was slightly damp and involved mud for the solid effect rather than it crumbling, the composition was decided upon the trees realistic underground features, it looks made up, serpent like and imaginary but is actually the trees basic appearance underground, trees of this size have magnificent roots and this shows this natural composition over ground rather than under, the photographs composition focuses only on the tree and the roots and the low angle it has been taken from makes the roots looks superior to even the tree, no unnecessary space is left, the rather rectangular shape emphasizes height on the tree, the small amount of background space is easily taken up by more natural features, ground, mud and other tree branches, the season must have been autumn because of the visible leaves fallen to the ground in the background. This was a perfect time to produce this artwork in particular because of the bear branches look well with the roots which wouldn't have leaves on them. The scale of the actual work is obviously bigger than the photograph, around 10metres long altogether, the fact the roots are created to be life size also shows the realistic side to Goldsworthy’s work. Texture and shape are the most important formal elements in this work, the shape of the roots bending around each other is needed to make the sculpture look right altogether, and the smoothened texture isn't realistic but gives a more simple appearance to the sculpture showing its magnificence rather than actual texture, also seems more serpent like. they are symbolic to the underground appearance of the tree, they could symbolise the age of it. The tone of the whole composition comes naturally rather than being created as does the colour, although the darkness of the tree contrast with the 'roots' which Goldsworthy has chosen to be the same material (mud) as the ground perhaps representing the underneath rather than the over ground actual tree.
I would associate the work with landscape, even though it isn't a full one it shows a natural scene but in a portrait composition, which could mean more life to the tree as a living plant, it could fit into more than one category but mostly stands for its own purpose, personal to Goldsworthy, not commercial and very alive although rather still. I think he is trying to present the unseen in his natural way of producing art, the earthy roots representing the underground and also associating well with the title, they looks serpent like, like a large snake which brings in fantasy to the composition because of its appearance being similar to a creature, the title also helps to create power in the photograph because of its powerful words relating to something usually quite large and strong. The theme is definitely nature and natures power, it relates to the life cycle of nature and how this is often overlooked or unseen. The photograph moves away from the idea of something busy or rural relating to people, but explores something more silent, yet still shows life, the silence is quite relaxing to look at, nothing but natural aspects are shown which add to this. The accurate interpretation I have been given on this photo came from which features Goldsworthy' own opinions, although he explains what he likes to work with and how he does this, the meaning of the work is open for individual reading rather than an actual explanation. 

My personal response to the work, it reminds me of exploring in a forest or park, but seeing something more interesting such as the roots in this picture, a more twisted version of nature. I like it because although it looks simple, it must have taken time and accuracy to produce and I can see a deeper meaning in it, it is different to anything usual which gives it a lot of originality, I think differently about it after realising that the roots were actually what was underground and not just there to look cool. The only sense provoked is silence, the narrative almost tells a story of time and ageing in the tree, showing its life from start to what we see it as. It tells this long story simply by one picture rather than words. The first thing that came into my head when I saw this piece was snakes because of the roots, overall they capture my attention mostly.

Flower Photographs.

Using my digital camera these are photographs of various flowers that I took, alive and dead.
 Involves graves and flowers, life and death...
 Loads of various flowers types and colours, composition shows them all from a distance.
 Flowers fallen into the snow, winter combined with the colours of summer flowers.
 Close up of dying flower, focused on that only, detail captured well.
 Rose falling, out of focus background I like the colours.
 Windswept flowers, pale, soft colours, focus on them, greens create a natural look.
 Roses, I tried black and white to see what its effect would be, not my favourite compositional photograph and fairly dull.
 I liked the full looking composition and the rich reds in contrast with the white snow, using photoshop I kept only the roses ad inversed the colours for the background to be black and white only after selecting the flowers.
 My favourite, left its colours as they were, I like the water droplets from the snow on the flowers and the flash helped bring out more brighter reds/pinks.
 Sinking roses, I liked just them in colour.
 I like the colours and composition of this.
Alive rose caught in burnt building rubble...
I decided to take more photographs of the same roses I'd seen again at a later time and at different weather conditions, showing their different appearances in their life.

Graveyard Photographs.

Looking back at my 'Life Cycles' mind map of ideas, I quite liked the route of showing life cycles (life coming to an end) by photographing a graveyard because it represents death, it gave eerie images and a dark feel to them, different to anything I had ever done before. here are my results from a 14 mega pixel digital camera. Black and white fitted the dim theme better and contrasts the colours well, I used photoshop to add this.
Luckily snow fell, this composition above wasn't great, there was no particular part of it that drew me straight to it, probably a failed attempt of a mid shot os graves, which didn't line up well together.
Plain and simple gravestone, the snow helps contrast its dark shade, effective photograph, captures the area of the living in the background too.
Same stone from a different angle, even though it is composed on the side, we are drawn to it aswell as seeing more of the cemetry in the background.
I liked this because the stones create a pattern as they get further away, also the visible names create a more personal feeling of death in the photograph.
Shows the nature in the scene, winter tree branches and flowers at the end of there life cycle, dead just like the people presented by the graves, the tree falling down from the top adds to sadness and fits well with the winter effect created by the snow.
Closer view, both subjects fitting the theme of death within life cycles.
Simular to the gravestone shown before, although the snowy background with no houses and no other graves creates more isolation and lonliness in the photograph.
Plants overgrowing onto the grave, new life in them over the death of somebody, winter effect worked well here.
Graves look randomly dotted everywhere, different shapes making the photo more interesting, church in background can mean life or death or marriage.
Simular graves, different sizes, could represent age, shows death of anyone.
Flowers cemented onto the stone, dramatic effect working well with the trees.
Again shows death in the surroundings too, captures loving words of memory.
Anchor creates more personality, links to the dead themselves and what they did in life.
Close up of lettering, personalises the composition, creates more emotion towards death.
Plaques of the deads names, shows great loss and works well as this composition, its booklike.
Snow covering everything but the grave, dead flowers add to the emotion of the photograph, personal to me, newer grave part of the cemetry, different to the older weathering stones.
Close up of book with rememberance words on it, weathered, fading away.
Slightly lower angle, shows grave pearing through eerily in thebackground.
Newer graves, creates a sense that death in ongoing in contrast to the older graves.
Angel engraving, relates to the fantasy world of death, saddened expression captured for the photograph.
Most emotional photograph, childrens cemetry, long shot rather than close up, contrasts of happiness and playing in the toys captured but a saddened reality.
Old graves that lined up well, ivy creating a pattern on them, taking them over.
Closer version.
A favourite, the contrast created worked really well, captures every detail of the real plants and the stone ones on the grave.
Not a good composition, but it shows fallen over graves, perhaps forgotten people that have just been left alone.
Close up of engraved lettering.
Shows graves, snow and plants, contrasts well.
The closest stone works well here because it looks more powerful than the other graves.
Light reflecting off of the marble looks great here, I love the tilted composition, simple but effective and working well, looks newer and the plants look more alive.
Close up of dead plants wrapped around the grave, graves in background set off the atmostsphere better too.
I also found a lot of statues/figures of people/angels and cherubs which linked well with the theme (below), they were presenting people, people live life, they fitted well with the death them,e because of their still ness, saddened expressions of remorse creating emotion. below are the photographs I took.
Religious almost, cross and angels fron christianity maybe, close up.
Darker contrast on this slightly longer shot.
Taken from below makes it look larger and more powerful, emerging over the sky in the background, shows personal background on the person buried, eroded face shows lack of identitiy, death or ruins to the statue as the person.
Close up feels as if it is looking straight at you.
Longer shot showing the exact occupation of the person buried.
Angel looking to the sky, praying, religious composition shows a religious person buried. Flash used here, brings out the stone detail better but less darkness.
Same composition, no flash, works better with the eeriness of the photo.
Hand grasping a bird, no life, shows the cycle of water too, from freezing to ice.
Fairy, childlike, praying, again religious.
Cherub child in snow, winter effect works well, low angle creates more size to it, more emotion towards a child, statue almost presents the death.
Composition works well, focuses just on the statue, contrasts well with the sky, seems as if it is flying or supernatural, larger.
Close up, simple background.
Mid shot, shows religious part of the statue, more emotion shown on the face.
Show expression of sadness and loss, childlike and touching.
Longer shot, child is almost climbing for someone out of reach.
Close view of angels facing eachother.
View of angel/fairy facing eachother, quite contrasting towards the idea of presenting the dead.
I like this because it could seem like the sad statue is turned away and mourning death, but the flowers are fully alive, I used photoshop to keep the flowers in colour to emphasise this.