I never truly felt finished with this project, as Cameraless Photography is such a broad area and can be linked to other practices such as Sculpture and Painting. It has overall though been an eye opening project of what can be considered as Photography and how through the likes of emerging practices such as 3D printing, vac forming, laser cutting can all link to Photography in creative ways to create different perspectives of how Photography can be seen through breaking rules and going against what is considered to be the norms. Studying cameraless photography over the past six weeks has certainly enhanced my studies artistically with thinking outside of the box.
I believe Photography is a ‘vision’, you have to have a vision in order to create and I believe it has to show ‘reality in a past state’as Barthes stated in his book Camera Lucida. Photography has to represent something, the decisive moment and is always a visual medium. In regards to Photography being classed as Art, after reading the book Shadow Catchers it is definitely true that Photographic techniques can be used to make Art and there are also Photographs that make you wonder how they were created but it always preserves a moment in time that has now ended, the aim of the image is clearly framed and distinguishable and most of the time a Photograph is a finished result.. However through this project I have realized that post production is also important in changing the meaning and context of an untouched and original Photograph which could also be considered Cameraless Photography as the whole meaning has been reinvented and changed in to something new.
In regards to my own project for this module, my final prints were originally based around Photographic images taken of Space which were true to facts. I did create the work beside the images of Space with intent to make them as Photo-realistic as possible, and knowing I would be using post production to enhance this later on which I feel worked successfully.
If having more time was a possibility, I would want to create an installation based around light with this work, in an extremely large format (A1) to submerse the viewer in to the details of the work and hopefully this will enhance thought provoking and therefore change perceptions in a sense, a big influence for this project has indeed been James Turrel’s light installations which is very clear through my writing.
I feel as though I would also like to link my project even further in to Photography and spend more time with dark room chemicals to create coloured versions of the landscapes, again in a large format. Although I believe my project does link in to Photography as I see them personally as ‘Photo-paintings’, in which I have Painted landscapes of the Universe with genuine photographic images of the scene in hand, although some of the prints do appear abstract which is something I am unsure benefits or would disengage the viewer on the basis of the project.. By using the Photographic scanner to transfer my images in to the digital world it creates an illusion of a genuine Photographic image, alongside the minor post editing of Photoshop. From conducting research the boundaries of what can be considered as Photography have expanded greatly and continue to do so. I feel my main purpose in this project was to challenge perspectives of my audience, to provoke thought around the idea of the universe and also what can be considered to be Photography, I will be self critical of this until I receive feedback when presenting to my peers to gain their views.
My finals are based around the idea of creating a new perspective on Photography, looking in to what can be classed as Painting and Photography as separate practices or whether they can be classed as a blend of the two. My finals resemble photographs of cosmic galaxies and space and have been scanned digitally to represent this however they are in fact made with ink, solutions and acrylic to create a surreal landscape painting.
After scanning my finals I quickly noticed on inspection that lines had been produced by accident either from the scanner or from myself overlaying my work on top of one another, I new that I could not hand my work in like this so to disguise the markings I used the clone stamp to fix this problem. Below is the edited version of one of my finals using the clone stamp, I think this worked well with fixing this simple issue.
Initially I had intended to create landscapes in the darkroom only creating them by progressively dipping the photo paper in to developer, stop bath and fixer using different movements and for specific number of seconds to create different depth, which also gave different results depending on the type of photo paper used. I enjoyed this and very much liked the different ranges of depths that could be created, however I felt I wanted to add colour to this process and decided to use ink on acetate to create these landscapes and then scan them followed by printing.
If I were to improve my results for this project and exploring the theme more thoroughly by linking it to the photographic process I would want to take coloured ink or food colouring in to the darkroom and experiment further to create combined versions, I do wish I had more time to do this as I feel it would be another level of experimentation and development.
In regards to dissemination of my work I would ideally want to present my finals in large format, possibly the size of A1 as I feel this would immerse the viewer similarly as James Turrells’ exhibitions of colour, light, perception and space. I want to bring to light through this project the space beyond our world as it is fascinating and infinite, my intent is to challenge the perceptions of the audience around what is considered a Photograph. The theme is to represent mindfulness and the infinite of our Universe and to provoke thought through my work.
The above look very dark, so I will work on the levels such as input, output/ brightness and contrast to ensure the lightness is increased. As well as improving the lightness I want to make sure they are all consistent in regards to the colour tones, I can do this by altering the hue and saturation on each image to ensure they are coherent.
Presenting your work in a Portfolio is very important as it can improve your work further if done in the right way to compliment your style of work:
Presenting your work through an Online format.
The disadvantages of presenting your work through an online format is that if your work is produced on a certain type of Paper such as Hahnemuhle fine art Photographic dark room paper which gives the work texture or high quality satin photo paper which gives low glare and light reflection off the paper, it is tricky to show this through a computer screen or laptop screen.
The size of your work when displayed on a screen isn’t anywhere as near as impacting or immersive to the viewer compared to physically.
It would benefit your chances of being successful if you are showing a refreshing way of presenting your work to the interviewer compared to what you have already possibly sent through when you have sent your CV in the first instance.
However positives of presenting your work through an online format include the fact that it would portray a clean and smooth flowing presentation at the click of a button.
Presenting online also is a good way to create links to other relative work that could enhance the presentation and give the interviewer a better idea of context within your work.
Presenting in Person with a physical portfolio.
I think when presenting your work in a Photographic/Fine art sense it is much better to have prepared a physical portfolio of work to present, as you are able to show your work in a large format to show as much detail as possible compared to a computer screen, there is also the positive of the choice of paper you have used which adds more depth and texture to the work if relevant. Your work will become much more immersive with a physical print rather than on a computer screen, this will become an advantage when presenting.
Possibly by showing experiments you feel haven’t worked so well will also become an advantage rather than showing all similar work.
Choosing work that you can tell a story through meeting the brief, conquering problem solving and suiting it to the skills you have that the interviewer is looking for.
Conducting research on the agency, gallery or brand in which you are presenting to and ensure that your own portfolio is able to become relevant to them.
Publishers – ArtBook.com
Artbook.com is a platform which hosts creative talent and their work including Architecture, Photography, Curation, Film, Music, Fashion, Design, Theory, Culture and Literacy. ArtBook organizes pop up and permanent bookshops in partnerships with museums, retailers, art fairs and cultural events. Some institutions include the Guggenheim Museum, The Whitney Museum of American Art, Creative Capital, ArtTable, MoMa NY. ArtBook is an amazing worldwide source for Books on Art and Culture.
As far as I can see from research they have many shops worldwide however I am still yet to locate one in the UK which is the only negative of this platform.
Local Art Fairs
However an alternative and one that is more close to home would be Manchester Artists Book Fair, which I have unfortunately missed this year but will hopefully attend in future. It would be a great chance to network and get to experience some local Manchester Art, aswell as putting a face to the people behind the creations.
Manchester Buy Art Fair –
Manchester Buy Art Fair takes applications for your own work to be featured at their events which I think would be a great chance to take the next time it comes round. This fair will return in September 2017 and I am aiming to involve myself when the time comes.
The Manchester Contemporary
The Manchester Contemporary takes place alongside The Buy Art Fair which is based at The Old Granada Studios.
Frieze London takes place from 5-8 october 2017 where artists range from the emerging to the iconic, although this is a little further a field it is definitely one to remember for future.
The Affordable Art Fair – Bristol
From reading in to each art fair, it seems that many genres of art collide from painting to photography to performance and music.
Start Art Fair at Saatchi Gallery London
Start Art Fair is hosting its fourth edition from 2017 and is held within The Saatchi Galler, from reading up on this art fair it is one that is breaking traditions with the potential to BOOST the global art market.
In looking in to applying for 2017 here is what is stated on their website:
“Projects is a series of curated presentations that complement the fair. Each Project focuses on artists from new art scenes, giving them a platform to do a curated presentation in London that is almost always their debut UK solo show.
The Projects in 2016 presents work by Iraqi-born, Qatari-based artist, Mahmoud Obaidi. Alongside his own project, Mahmoud Obaidi has also curated a presentation of emerging artists who have recently taken part in the Artist in Residence Programme at the Fire Station in Doha, Qatar, titled ‘Identity, Construction & Deconstruction’. Sumakshi Singh makes her debut UK presentation with an immersive installation titled ‘In the Garden’.
‘Future Island’ is a presentation curated by Mehta Bell Projects focusing on contemporary Taiwanese art and the final START Project is a presentation by the 2015 Winner of the Ciclitira Prize at The Prince’s School of Traditional Arts.
START Projects lead the way in the curatorial thinking around START, linking the fair to Parallel Contemporary Art’s background in exhibition-making, artist prizes and books on emerging art scenes”.
Alongside making applications with work that I feel would be suitable, it may also be a possibility to apply to Photograph the events that take place as a good starting point, as this could be a possible avenue in to meeting and networking with more creatives in the UK. I think that in order to be accepted by an Art Fair it would be the perfect opportunity to get your work seen curators, critics, collectors, consultants, advisors, gallery owners and other influential industry members.
Here I thought it may be useful to add some information on advice in how to get your work in a gallery and how the art world works, in preparation for when I graduate. I found the following information useful to keep in mind for future and to work toward:
“Different people understand art in different ways. Different people require different kinds and complexities of information and explanations. Don’t think for an instant that selling art to a collector is anywhere near the same as presenting it to a curator or to a critic. Everyone is different and the more experienced the gallery owner, the more versatile he or she is at successfully customizing and conveying the significance of your art based on the specifics of a given situation.”
“when you get the chance you can’t hold back; you have to give it your all. You’re art is up for public inspection and it’s either impress the cognoscenti or else. Give less than 100% and you can compromise your career in a hurry, end up back in the studio making random acts of art, and beating the bushes to find buyers.”
“Your art hardly looks any better anywhere else than it does in a gallery. That’s obvious. What’s not so obvious is that the gallery owner knows the fine points of making your art look its absolute best. If you’re having a solo show, they know what to hang where, how to arrange it, how to progress the experience from one work to the next and how to make sure you’re satisfied and understand how your art is being presented to the public.”
Above written by Lisa Chadwick of Dolby Chadwick Gallery in San Francisco and Marsea Goldberg of New Image Art Gallery in Los Angeles.
Social Media – Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Flikr, Pinterest, Behance
Social media is an amazing platform for your own work to be easily accessible to the world and the people who you want to see your work, however it can be a struggle or take many years due to the amount of competition so by applying for galleries and art fairs it will help with coverage indefinitely. The positives are if you know how to publish your own work well, it can be great and attract many many followers however the negative is the competition is so large and everyone wants to go up, not down.
Camera Lucida and Camera Obscura were the only lens based drawing techniques available before 1837, which literally means in Latin “dark” and “room”, it comes down to the fact that light travels in a straight line through a pin hole which creates an upside down image on a surface opposite to the pin hole that the light travels through. This technique goes as far back to 5th century BC, with the Chinese Philosopher Mo-Ti to which he called the technique “collecting place” or “locked treasure room”.
Aristotle (384-222 BC) next discovered this technique through witnessing a eclipsed sun through holes in a sieve. Leonardo Di Vinci was known to have noted Camera Obscura down in his note books. Johannes Kepler, a German Astronomer first used the term ‘camera obscura’ which he kept with him a portable camera for his Astronomy.
From then Camera Obscura was known to help many Painters such as Jan Vermeer and Guardi, from which at the start of the 19th Century it evolved in to the first Photographic Camera.
Camera Obscura has recently been made known again by artist David Hockney, introduced Lenticular vision which involves combining a number of images together to create a 3D looking effect. Below is an example:
sourced from: https://www.ibiblio.org/wm/paint/auth/hockney/
sourced from: http://www.edgar-degas.org/Dance-Class-1871.html
Photographers would take inspiration from Degas’s work and create similar techniques from breaking down the piece in to columns and posts. Pierre Bonnard, an example of his work is shown below began to paint from Photographic sketches..
sourced from: https://www.parisianist.com/en/paris-now/expositions/pierre-bonnard-painting-arcadia
In the 1950’s both Painters and Photographers such as Franz Kline and Robert Frank took ideas and inspirations from work such as Degas’ which led to the results below: These gestures are carried on today and will be ongoing, example of work by Lee Friedlander:
sourced: Robert Frank – http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424052970204518504574416953546202432
sourced: Franz Kline – https://www.moma.org/m/tours/7/tour_stops/125?locale=it
Sourced: Lee Friedlander – http://www.andrewsmithgallery.com/exhibitions/leefriedlander/newmexico/leefriedlander.html.
In an exhibition from the Museum Of Contemporary Photography called “Painting on Photography, Photography on Painting” relies on the basis facts from above to represent modern artists and give a new take on ways of seeing the links between Photography and Painting and how far the boundaries can be broken in order to still consider it either Painting, Photography or blurred lines between the two practices.
Eric Fischl – information sourced: http://www.skarstedt.com/artists/eric-fischl/
Eric Fischl is a New York born Painter who also works with Prints and Sculpture. He is most well known for his work being based around naturalistic American life which shows the truth that society in this age sees as inpolite, I think Fischl produces his work in such large scale due to the fact he is trying to highlight the culture of today that we can’t avoid when in their presence, they totally involve the viewer. This artist takes influence from paintings by Kline and Degas’ due to the technique used of splitting images in to columns.
This is a completely refreshing perspective on looking at what Photography is, Eric Fischl’s work links to my own due to his Painting being based around Photographic images, although he changes them slightly to exaggerate the culture that mainly focuses on materialistic factors rather than substance.
Moni K. Huber – http://www.hdlu.hr/eng/2015/10/exhibition-moni-k-huber-arcadia-in-decay/
In Moni K. Huber’s series above entitled ‘Arcadia in Decay’ which shows what was once a utopia for tourists from the East and West which involves the aftermath effects of the civil war. Huber’s paintings shows that the areas are majestic even through their decay, with themes from history, architecture and nature combined. Her work involves Painting with watercolour, acrylic and Photography which give Photorealistic effects and records a moment in time beautifully.
Randy Hayes creates Photo paintings, at times making one image from multiple separate images and then painting over them, his work creates perspectives from all different sides which I find incredibly interesting and his work beautifully amazing especially in his series ‘The World Revealed’ (The two images above). Hayes has received many awards, other museums that have featured his work include New York Contemporary Art in New York.
As a continuation of creating my project based around the idea of Ethereal landscapes, particularly based around the theme of Galaxies, Space and The Universe I have decided to purchase ink (colours chosen in relation to actual existing Photographs of Space pictured below as inspiration.)
I plan to scan my images using a flat bed scanner once dried, on this post I will talk through the process of making these experiments. I chose to work on A3 Sheets of Acetate as this is an alternative which is much cheaper than perspex or glass and gives virtually identical results, the fact that I have chosen to work on the size of A3 gives me more freedom with my work and able to create bigger prints after scanning them in to the computer.
Starting with the bubble solution by pouring it in certain areas over the acetate which I then began to use the spray bottles filled with ink and diluted with water (as I thought this would work in a similar way to how the spray bottles worked whilst in the darkroom) however this technique was not successful and in fact watered down the ink so much than when it came to being sprayed on to the acetate, it was barely visible to the eye, I think the spray bottles do not work well with acetate and work much better in the darkroom or say to create a very large piece of work, such as A1.
The next technique I tried was to pour ink in small amounts over the bubble solution which created a natural blend of ink and the bubble solution over the acetate to which I then layered the other colours of ink, waited to dry (speeding up the process by using a hairdryer which also manipulated the substance on the page) then repeated until happy with the outcome. I then placed a second sheet over the acetate to create air bubbles which I didn’t intend to happen. Then I added what were to look like stars by flicking white acrylic paint with coarse bristles all over.
My reasoning for creating a piece based on Space and The Universe is purely due to the fact of the society we now live in, when it has become so easy to get too involved and wrapped up in the small things, so much that it has led to a severe increase of anxiety, social anxiety and depression within the middle aged, younger adults, the following generation – it is affecting everyone and I want to show that no one is ever alone through this work. During the creation of these pieces if helped me to forget about any worries I currently had, it was freeing and I want to encourage the idea that we are part of something infinite in this Universe, that if we spent as much time trying to inspire eachother and help eachother as much as we hurt, with unity we could be a lot more powerful.
The experiment below I feel didn’t work very well at all, I feel it doesn’t look or resemble space due to the large areas of ink that look much more abstract and unidentifiable, which isn’t my intent.
When I had scanned my experiments, I noticed that because I had used acetate the background didn’t work well, with this in mind I decided to then scan with a sheet of black card behind the acetate which made a huge difference. I then added the scanned images in to Photoshop, resized, cropped and adjusted the brightness and contrast to make them more defined, below is the result.