Earlier in Part Four you considered the argument that the ‘mechanical’ nature of photography precludes it from being considered an art.
Does this make photography a medium uniquely suited to portraying time and the passage of time?
I think that everything we have seen so far shows that photography is perfectly suited to capturing time, and can be done so in both a scientific and an artistic way. As an example, Dr Edgerton’s photographs were never meant to be artistic, they were more like experiments. ‘“Don’t make me out to be an artist,” stated Edgerton. “I am an engineer. … Read the rest
Look carefully at the images in the course book. Also look up a fourth image, Jacques-Henri Lartigue’s Cousin Bichonnade in Flight online. Make some notes about how each conveys movement. You don’t have to write anything technical; just note down what you feel is going on in each image – and how successful it is. Compare what you’ve written with the commentary.
The first image is Derek Trillo’s Passing Place. The work is of two people walking towards each other on a set of stairs with a multicoloured wall behind them. The figures are a little blurred, so the shutter … Read the rest
Read Gareth Dent’s article ‘Dealing with the flood…’ on www.weareoca.com
- If you use social media, spend a few minutes reflecting on how you use photography within it, particularly if you engage in photography in other contexts as well.
I use Facebook and Instagram, Instagram more than Facebook nowadays. Instagram is obviously a very photo-based platform, but I rarely post much on my personal account anymore. I do post on my weight loss account though, progress pictures and other random shots of me. I used to post a lot of photos of my kids when they were younger, mostly when I … Read the rest
This exercise asks us to look through a photo album to look for any ‘artistic’ photos and to note down what it is about these particular images that makes them more like artworks than some of the others. Is it because they capture a particular moment or event that you’ll never be able to re-create, for example? Is it the background, the light, or the effort that you know went into taking it?
I couldn’t find a lot of photos of mine that were particularly artistic, but I have presented a few below – normal snapshots on the right, attempts … Read the rest
This research point asks us to make notes on John A. Walker’s essay ‘Context as a Determinant of Photographic Meaning’ (available here) along with our own thoughts on the issue.
Firstly, Walker talks about the range of contexts that photographs can be found and how this changes the meaning.
He goes on to say that a photograph is enclosed within its own frame and that ‘…it is natural for us to mentally place in brackets the context in which the photograph is viewed…’. i.e. we do not usually consider the context that we are viewing the photo in, we … Read the rest
We are asked to think about what we believe makes photographs a unique art form, and then about their production in relation to time and what exactly we mean by ‘photographic image’.
Some things that make photographs unique from other art forms, for example, paintings:
- The same subject can be captured from different angles, distances, viewpoints and heights in a very short amount of time and with little effort, just by moving the camera. Changes to exposure ad aperture are also quick to do in order to alter the lighting and atmosphere. If you wanted to make these changes to
… Read the rest
This first research point in the photography section asks us the read the introductory sections of The Pencil of Nature by William Henry Fox Talbot (available at www.thepencilofnature.com and also as a PDF file here – both accessed 22/02/20) and answer the following:
Do you see photography as mechanical or creative? Can any process be both?
Having been interested in photography for many years, I have always believed that it is both mechanical and creative. In other words, both science and art.
In Talbot’s introduction to The Pencil of Nature, he mostly discusses the mechanics and chemical processes involved in … Read the rest