Week 3 – 25/02/19

This week I sent researching the theory within photography, for example Plato’s Cave. This gave me a clearer understanding of the purpose of photography and what my images outcome should aim to do. I spent most of this week developing my skills rather than my portfolio, which will eventually contribute to my portfolio as I will use the skills I learnt to produce my final images. 

 

PLATOS CAVE – 

From the chapter “In Plato’s Cave” in the book On Photography (1977) written by Susan Sontag, Plato’s cave is described as being our world of which we document through photography, professional or amateur. It is described as a new visual code, ‘photographs alter and enlarge our notions of what it worth looking at and what we have a right to observe’ as people. 

 

“HOLD THE WORLD IN OUR HANDS

 

It is suggested that to collect photographs is to collect the world in our hands, however is very much subjective to ethical or political knowledge depending on the way it is interpreted. An image is also an object. Sontag proposes that ‘photographs are perhaps the most mysterious of all the objects that make up, and thicken, the environment we recognise as modern’. 

Photographs allow ourselves to be put into a certain relation to the world that feels like knowledge – and, therefore, like power. Described by Sontag as ‘pieces of the world, minitures of reality’, however also saying that photographs are as much an interpretation of the world as paintings or drawings are. In many ways being ‘the toy of the clever, the wealthy, and the obsessed’. 

Linking back to the idea photos give us a sense of power, Sontag describes photography not being practiced by most people as an art form. Instead, ‘it is mainly a social site, a defence against anxiety, and a tool of POWER’. Sontag asserts that cameras are a type of weapon, to photograph people is to violate people, the photographer is able to see others ‘as they never see themselves’. As well as being a weapon, a form of addiction: 

 

“NEEDING TO HAVE REALITY CONFIRMED AND EXPERIENCE ENHANCED BY PHOTOGRAPHS IS AN AESTHETIC CONSUMERISM TO WHICH EVERYONE IS NOW ADDICTED

 

Today, everything exists to end in a photograph.

 

WORKSHOP SHOOT

I really enjoyed working in the photographic studio experimenting with camera length and lighting techniques. These are a few of the photos I took, I wanted to be close-up with the camera to focus on the lighting surrounding my subject. 

The focus of the workshop was to explore lighting and camera techniques, exploring visual language and its relationship to photography. We explored the three main light sources, directional; defused; and reflected. As well as touched upon model lights and flash lights. 

What is not shown in these images is the well executed infinity curve, aiming to make the backdrop appear never ending. We were also taught how to use ‘slaves’, a small device which allows all light sources to communicate when the picture is taken. 

 

SHOOT 1 – STUDIO

 

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