Friday, 16 November 2012

Inspirations for the fifth assignment

There have been a few photographers that I have been looking at recently in relation for this fifth assignment. The first was Mary Ellen Mark. Her photographs ranged greatly but there was always the same style even though the photographs were often to order. This was definitely something I could learn from as I was completing a brief and her photojournalistic style is powerful for documenting many topics. For example ''Rat' and Mike with a Gun, Seattle, Washington, USA, 1983' portrays two outcast children in a harsh, urban reality, which also related to my current brief coincidentally.

   I consequently found out about Cheryl Dunn through looking at Mary Ellen Mark's work - Cheryl Dunn had shot a film including Mary Ellen Mark (Everybody Street). I found her work to be very impactful and always seeming to make a statement. I realised a lot of her work included text in the images to aid with these 'statements' and provide stimulation for the viewer. I thought it would be a useful possibility to incorporate into the assignment.

   I looked at James Ravilious' work on rural life in Devon in the Beaford Photographic Archive with the intention of gaining insight into how he managed to convey different angles on rural life and of both people and place in a set of photographs. Then I attempted to transfer these observations into contributing towards my own project with the main difference being that photographs would be based around urban life. I discovered after looking at some of his 'Beaford Archive' that just by placing the subject in the frame in a way that attracted the viewer's attention, he suggested relationships between the subject and the background. I thought this 'compositional awareness' was something I could learn from in this assignment because it would potentially allow me to show off the alternative side to London where the backgrounds would be as important a factor in some of the photos as the subject. Secondly, I admired the vast variety of his photographs in his study of rural life in Devon and thought it would be applicable to my study of 'alternative' urban life in London. It gave me confidence for the assignment because if he could create such variety in a study of a small village like Beaford, then it could mean lots of possibilities for me.

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