As the pressure and deadlines at University have began to pile up I have been working towards a mock exhibition in preparation for the MA show in October. I have been experimenting a lot with film photography as well as using the spaces themselves to leave am impression upon the image of itself. I have thought a lot recently also about how my work and my plans for our future escape are beginning to align more and more as I come to the point in which I am ready to make my final statement for my work.
One of the things I really like about film photography and what brought me to these further experiments is it's fragility and sense of being lost within modernity. How film photography was about capturing a moment and taking a chance on one exposure not in snapping away the same image multiple times and checking on the safety of the digital screen. In the same way the use of light leaks in many of my film photography is born out of the idea of risking ruining the film for something beautiful and unpredictable.
It's that idea of playing it safe and coming out with something generic, or taking a chance and creating something unique to you. I equate this very much to the idea that people are too scared to risk their settled lives, ones in which deep down they wish they could do more, but they won't take that chance. I believe it is a foolish way to look at life, there is no trial run, I think it is more risky to resign yourself to a life of miserable existence, following someone else's rules and spending most of your life making someone else profit, than to truly live life on your own terms
Most are conditioned into thinking this is the only way, or it is the way in which you buy a token amount of freedom and create a safety net. But that safety net is a fraud, I have seen first hand people work their lives away for a company and for a pension, in places such as these mills, factories and city streets within the photographs, only to be cruelly discarded when times became hard. These images are a visualisation of these ideas, my discoveries and what we overlook in following normality.
I have explored the city, the forgotten nooks and crannies of the everyday metropolis. I have ventured into long lost industrial ruins where once hundreds of people milled away their lives for a pittance. I have seen the once new and popular transformed into the decaying remnants of existence.
How time and perspective transforms them, I have noticed the details, I have seen them fade like an old photograph from reality into memory. An uncanny dream like space which I have searched out as my escape from the oppression of the homogenised modern city. I have been part of that sidestepping of the everyday by simply taking a path away from the shallow facade of consumerism and distraction.
These photographs show that transformation, they show us the details and the fragments of these left over ruins of a not too distant past. They show how it can fade and they allow the dereliction within the image to take on a physical and yet ghost like presence. They obscure the whole image and talk about individual interpretation and discovery instead of white washed malls and spoon fed purchased personalities.
They are one-offs, they are chance taking, they are discoveries waiting to be found and they are fragments of the unpredictable and intriguing world most overlook for the reassuring entrapment of normality.
I am excited that my work and my lifestyle theory are coming together nicely and I feel that is the job of the MA. That is has given me this way of taking the ideas I already had and making sense of them in a way which allows to me to creative but also make a path for myself post MA. I will be printing these images off to use in an upcoming exhibition as mentioned above alongside the prints themselves, negatives and found ephemera, so keep an eye out for that post soon.
Below is a section of my prints, all shot on either 35mm or 120mm film (often expired) and then left back in the spaces (with a little bit of my secret potion) for a few weeks.