This current SDA is probably the hardest project I think I've ever done to date. My starting point was to try to work in a way that was different to my summer project, steering away from a snapshot aesthetic and to try to take more studio style images. Unfortunately I wasn't able to produce work that I was happy with at all and this came across in my tutorials. I had been putting this down to a creative dip and not settling in to uni life very smoothly and I think to an extent this is true. Getting back into the way of thinking that let's me enjoy what I do has been especially hard this time around.
My main tutors for this year have been drilling one phrase into us over and over again, "don't do what you think we want to see, do what YOU want to be doing", with the emphasis on us enjoying the work we are producing. I have noticed a definite step up in the work that is expected of us and to an extent I was expecting it, but as I said before it has been very hard to get back in to working this way.
This evening I sat down and decided to focus on what interests me the most about photography at the moment. Ever since going to see EXPOSED: Voyeurism, surveillance and the camera, I have been increasingly interested in the idea of voyeurism and how it is almost vital to photography as an art form. I began to think back to the exhibition and the pieces of work that i found most interesting, to try and link them to my work for this project. One particular body of work stood out, not for it's photographs, but for the way in which they were displayed in the opening show.
Kohei Yoshiyuki's "The Park" features images of couples in Chuo Park in Shinjuku, and the peeping toms who spy on the sexual activities happening only meters away from them. He photographed these scenes using infra red flashes in order to take the photographs, an extremely voyeuristic act in itself, because he did not want to be caught. However when the images were displayed, they were shown in total darkness, with the viewers being given torches in order to see the photographs.
This got me thinking about the way I had been lighting my photographs that I had taken so far and how my use of flash is not as good as perhaps i'd like it to be. I decided to try and take something from Yoshiyuki's work and try lighting what i am photographing with a torch. My main idea so far has been to photograph my housemates' bedrooms and this way of lighting links in with the idea of voyeurism and of photographing a private space quite well. Here are some of the photographs I have just taken.
I still think I have some way to go with this, but hopefully this is going to give me the momentum to produce some work that I actually enjoy making.