Portraiture in Context

This particular project has taken several turns, and I have been steering myself towards portraiture for the past couple of shoots. When beginning this task I didn’t realise how hard it was going to be and how many things could go wrong. Unfortunately, the fates were throwing everything they could at me; bad weather, missing film, a whole shoot had to be thrown due to the focus, my family being unable to meet with me under natural light to take the photographs, and a whole lot of wasted time taking shoots that never came out, which has slowed me down tremendously.

I seem to have got myself back on track now. Here are some examples of some of my shoots so far.

Colour Medium Format

 Sister, Elizabeth Ann, 2012

Niece, Phoebe Elizabeth, 2012

Daughter, Jessica Rose, 2012

Mother, Ann Albertina, 2012

Myself, Natalie Rose, 2012

In the subject of symbolism, I built a wall out of wood using clips to hold them together like a jigsaw, the purpose to make it portable and to highlight the way we carry our memories with us where we go, remembering our loved ones, but never noticing change until looking back on older images.

In this shoot, and the following four black and white shoots, I used one of my Grandfathers bedsheets; hanging it on the wall. However, I had trouble getting the background to be out of focus, only realising this after I had developed the films. I also felt that the only successful shot is that of my daughter. Her eyes are so intently focussed on the camera, her expression showing innocence and truth, and I felt she wasn’t hiding anything from the lens. This is what I hoped to achieve and have strived to create using my other family members.

Remedying this, I painted the wall white, and used a smaller aperture, to get closer with my models and to create increasingly intimate portraits.


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