Putting my work on Instagram.

This was the first image of mine I chose to put on Instagram, I wanted to see how my work would be received. And I loved this image from the moment I took it. So I thought I have classmates who put their work on social media why can’t I! This piece to me wasn’t what you see on Instagram all the time so for that reason I thought I’d risk it. And I got a lot of likes not hundreds but enough to put confidence in to my work, I even got a good handful of additional followers which was nice. Felt my Instagram was getting a little more out there!

I think adding work my work to my Instagram did encourage me a bit more to go for it with my work. And that people want to see what I am doing or else why follow my page. It did give me confidence I desperately needed, I am the first one to admit I am often defeatist about my work and am the first one to pick faults. So doing this both got my work noticed and inspired me to be confident in the work I had created.

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Project Re-Write…

After my recent tutorial my project has been thrown out. And now am left confused as to what my project is really about now. My tutor after seeing my work for many months and knowing what it is about decided he did not like what the work was about anymore.

The idea of who she was, who she wants to be and who she really is now isn’t the basis for the work. But rather now I am to play with the ideas of too many photos of Jess like capturing her in every way. Or break it down into images she both likes and hates and then ones I like and hate. Which to me is going to get repetitive as we have very similar taste in the images.

So going to my second tutorial with my other tutor I spoke about the problems I was having. And had narrowed down my Images with approximately 5 images from shoots I have done so far. This brought my images down to 64.. Not the ideal amount. And then to be told to get rid of half of them again.

To me I feel like I am wasting my images, which I know isn’t the case as even I would not want to look at a 400 page edit. That would be mad, I just realise I have to be critical and get rid of images that won’t help me in anyway. Just because I like the image does not mean it will fit into the sequence.

Wrapping up with Jess

Now coming up to my last shoot for this project and Uni I feel totally mixed. On one hand I feel I could easily shoot for another couple of years and continue with the Uni life not ready for it to be over and responsibilities to start. But on the other hand it has been great being able to pull all my work together and show how much she has changed. And finally get uni over with as much fun as it has been. I feel ready to see it go now.

And in a way I have. I feel like You see this timid little girl at the start of my work when I was a scared fresher myself just learning to live on my own without my mum! And as the work progresses can see how Jess grows and how my work has also changed with it.

No longer are we the people from first year. Which is leaving me nostalgic and sad to see both this project and both the people we have been go with it. It has been a tough project and shooting with Jess over the last few years. From one problem to another we have slowly always managed to get the work done. Though this year I like how much more confident she has become and that has allowed us to push the boat out on what we can do. Also that we have collaborated a lot more so this project is as much hers and mine.

But now a handful of weeks from the end, it really is hitting home that my degree is pretty much at an end. Making me dread this final upcoming shoot with Jess. Although one last studio session with her now she is so confident and daring with so many of her own ideas seems like a great way to end it. Will be sad to never get her into a studio again where she thrives so naturally now.

After this point, then the last hard part is up to me. To narrow down all the photos I have been collecting. And show Jessica’s almost full circle during my time at Uni now as this young beautiful women she has turned into.

Rainbow makeup

In this next shoot we experimented with high key fashion ideas. Taken from a mood board created by my sister in preparation  for this shoot. We wanted to look at something more vibrant and different from what we have done so far. This stays with the idealistic theme and adds  more variety to the work.

These also not yet edited show the raw image that will soon be altered to match with the ideal version of who Jess wants to be. Which for my research will show the progression of who she wants to be in comparison to who she is in my other work.

All these images will slowly get selected down to create my final photo book and 3 main prints for my exhibition.  I want the idealistic images to all be unique and vibrant. Just so you know what is beyond the ordinary and without the same realistic quality as the location style shots. I want to make her stand out in a unique way without any certain narrative to this section, just her in almost an individual identity with each studio shot in a new way that has her in one idealistic way in one way or another.

Coloured shadows

After my last shoot I wasn’t sure where to go with this one. So that is when me and my sister decided to collaborate on this one. I have needed more work belonging to the section about her ideal self and this shoot was dedicated to that idea about idealism.

This shoot was designed by Jess she picked colour and posed how she wanted to. We wanted to work on something that was about body image but very different to what we see in the everyday and past sections of this project. The contrast that comes through in my work now has shown me the development that I have been waiting for.

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16933412_10210227178090750_871544733_nThese images that are not yet post produced have began to give  me an insight into the flow of the work. It is helping me to plan where my next shoot is going and how I want to present my work for my Final exhibition.

In the two images I have included the first looks at a more voyeuristic approach to the work. The female body in an over sexualised way which in modern social media is not uncommon now.

And the second image is one that has been seen before but we recreated finally after many mistimed attempts!! This image is almost symbolic for how she can be feeling in the last few years I have photographed her. It aligns with the idea of confusion and speed everything seems to move at that period of a persons life, Which is why I used the image.

Ideal me.

Looking towards the middle section of my work I am wanting to show my sister as her ideal self. Incorporating what she wants to look like with ideas from what we see everyday. This section of my project is very influenced by her, she can be in control of the studio based practice.

We have been focusing a lot on body image and how she thinks she should look from lighting to poses we have considered many angles. I have been setting Jess tasks for the upcoming studio session to create mood boards and pick her own theme for the shoot. I want her to have the control over how she wants to look.

If she has control over the shoot then it really is about how she wants to look. It will shape to her body ideals, and how she wants to be seen and presented. Although this is a photo of Jess this isn’t her identity it is of her not about her.

She can put herself into whatever identity she wishes to have and it doesn’t matter she creates her own narrative of the idealistic self she chooses to portray. In this situation she can be vain  and all about her body image. It’s her desires for herself she chooses to share with the audience which adds to my idea of every changing stages of her life.

The Kardashian makeover.

The Kardashian women and unrealistic body goals…

Today we are exposed to a constant stream of body ideals that are next to impossible to achieve. The most famous out there would be the Kardashians who are famous for the tiniest of waistlines and the biggest curves in all the right places.

The Photoshop behind the majority of this families success has led to girls body shaming in an effort to look like the latest Kardashian trend. It’s true what they say money really does speak, and if we had the money we would all turn into a Kim K look alike.

They encourage girls to objectify themselves even on social media all the girls post the most revealing images and in some bare all! Now that we can buy their waist-trainers, makeup and clothing line we want to be them. We don’t care about the amount of money it will cost the physical and mental dangers to ourselves. They aren’t just trend setters they are a trend in themselves.

Because they have created this perfect narrative on their Instagram we copy it. Although we slate them for how fake they are that even their ‘natural’ selfies are Photo shopped yet we do our best to recreate the look. Because of what we see it means me just can’t seem to be happy with what we do have ourselves. Now it is all about being self-obsessed and who’s Instagram looks the best.

 

Guest speaker- Bronia Stewart.

This week we just had another guest speaker Bronia Stewart. 

She started of doing a 6 month course that was primarily practical based. Then went on to assist for 2 years. She said how you have to mainly work free at this stage or with people who aren’t that great, but it all makes great experience. At this point she would be working full time whilst studying part-time.

Her first work that got exhibited was Babe Station, at this point she talked about access. Throughout all her projects access to the subject can be hard. And with this one it was that it was a very taboo subject. She started it online asking for participants and a couple of times got dangerous to her. Have to think about your location and ethnic considerations as well.

Because of the type of people she is photographing she knows not all can be emailed images or look online. She always gives them prints to have of the work she has done of them. She fully explains what she is wanting to do. Clarity and openness is how she goes about her relationships to the people she works with. She had to also be empathetic with her subject matter, as close as she would get to the people she worked with she had a project to complete. But you also can’t be judgemental about who you work with, they have their own reasons as to why they are in these situations or like they are and have to respect that.

she also spoke about the way in which she shoots. She very rarely does digital that is for her commercial work. She uses film and a basic flash. Bronia spoke about how she doesn’t have time for intricate lighting systems.she likes the exposed raw style of her images, she is capturing more often than not raw subjects why try and cover them up with pretty lighting and Photoshop.  What you see is what you get.

With her Pepe work she would be looking at gang members, and had quite a surprising outcome given how much they relish the violence and during her time there was shooting between gangs. She captured how much family is everything to them, they are completely family orientated.

Essex she had the problem she didn’t put a timeline on it really. She liked Essex so much she kept going back for almost a year. She also couldn’t get into the big clubs she wanted to as didn’t fit the criteria but she liked the link it set up to Babe Station. How women are influenced by media and expectations. How they have been shaping themselves in relation to the media.

She then went on to talk about commercial work, and how a lot of photographers don’t put their name to it. As they can receive a lot of backlash about how it doesn’t relate to their own practice. But needs must commercial pays for the projects. It doesn’t flow with their work that is already out there. And how it helps her to put deadlines on work. As even own projects need a deadline or will never be happy with the outcome of the work.

I think having her talk to us was really good. She has worked with a wide variety of people and works in many formats.  She is almost an opposite to our last guest speaker Sophie Abbott but I think that made it better as well. We are getting a well rounded variety of work to talk about and take from.

looking at John Berger’s Ways of seeing.

After having read this book multiple times and the using it as a main reference in my dissertation I thought it was about time I put my thoughts out there.                                 Every time I find myself reading this book it is always the third chapter that sticks out the most for me.

His lack of empathy towards women in this chapter astounds me.. some see it as his way of celebrating women. I see it as condemning them. He talks about how women are nothing but a ‘mirror image’, but it was men who lead us to believe that was what we initially were for.

“To be born a women has been to be born, within an allotted and confined space, into the keeping of men… But this has been at the cost of a women’s self being split in two. A women must continually watch herself.  She is almost continually accompanied by her own image of herself”

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We really ave become conscious of how we are perceived by others. And Berger talks about how it in theory started back as far as the biblical story of Adam and Eve. The women made the first mistake and then was made to feel shame over her nakedness, From there they made Eve subservient to Adam.

And from then it is said to have started. Then referencing art work through the ages that has depicted the naked form of a women being watched or looking at herself. We work ourselves around how we want men to perceive us, body images stems from wanting acceptance and to be desired by men. And Berger put it in this format that shows us how women are vanity they only are pleased by what we see in our reflection.

But really yes women got handed the mirror by the artists/ photographers but it was the women who chose to accept what was handed to her and admire her own appearance.

Looking at Excellences and perfections by Amalia Ulman 

After mentioning this artists work in my last blog post, I wanted to look at her properly. Excellences and perfections is a perfect example of the characters of Instagram today.

This hoax she created attracted thousands more followers over the course of the work. She has used her work as a social experiment to demonstrate how people respond to and mimic these characteristics.

Giving the appearance she was going through drastic physical and mental changes. From the cute girl persona to the girl do Chanel coke lines off Mirrors.

After doing a lot of research into the characters she could become she developed a narrative to link the three together. Thanking her followers for the support as she ‘learned who the real me is’.

She cleansed, enhanced and ditched the coffee lover for the semi nudes and tear filled posts. All part of a carefully planned story to at the end show the falsity of her work.

With it receiving a lot of negative attention for supposedly lying to her followers. She points out she only did what we do everyday ourselves on Instagram.