Monday, 9 February 2009

Underwater Images

Here is another example of surrealism in a space very familiar to me.
Here are two shots, solarised and normal. i quite like the effect it gives off as the light reflects through the bubble.
This was actually a little difficult as having air in your lungs and trying to sink to the bottom is very difficult, so with the help of my mate Troy, who held me down with his foot to get me on the bottom for the shot. He also took this picture, this as a 'directed self-portrait'.
Within this image I was experimenting with creating an image which was powerful in subject matter as well as the surreal and un natural effect that is achieved throug the use of solarisation. My body has taken on a metallic sheen and the black background is a spacelike deep dark void where I am floating weighless and eternally - deep dark silent space..


These are images taken by the artistJun Nguyen-Hatsushiba highlighting the plight of the fishermen and bicycle taxi drivers in Vietnam. Both modes of work where struggling to survive in the countries rapid social and economic climate.
I particularly like these images because i am extremely at home under the water where the only form of communication is visual.

Solarization and Architecture

Looking at space and places ..

I am interested in architecture both old and new and buildings are the subjct of many of my projects. These are some images that I took for a recent module and using the technique of solarisation I set out to manipulate and change the imagery to become surreal urban visions of what something futuristic might look like.. I am interested in the effect that this creative technique has on the visual elements of my work. My main focus is the shape and form looking at unique features, angles and expressive qualities of a building. These are further enhanced by the use of specialised creative techniques to prodice visually stimulating imagery which have a dreamlike and surreal quality. I am drawn to the sculptural qualities of buildings and structures and their place within society and the purpose of the space and how it can be transformed into something altogether unreal

Monday, 2 February 2009

Sense of Place -What is it?

Hello to all friends, family, colleagues and students Iwelcome you to my blog space to create an open discussion about my work as a student photographer.

This isnt just about my images, but also about me as a person, so feel free to comment on whatever you see and also whatever you dont see. If you have any info relevent or even not so relevent send it my way.

All info posted will go towards my contextual studies: Sense of place/identity.

So ..What is a sense of place - how do we define it - is it just that a place or is it something else- is it a defined spot or is it an attachment that we form relating to a memory, emotion or evidence of something, some place some where - a belonging...

Below is an encyclopedia defintion of a sense of place ..

Sense of place
The term sense of place has been defined and used in different ways by different people. To some, it is a characteristic that some geographic places have and some do not, while to others it is a feeling or perception held by people (not by the place itself). It is often used in relation to those characteristics that make a place special or unique, as well as to those that foster a sense of authentic human attachment and belonging. Others, such as geographer Yi-Fu Tuan, have pointed to senses of place that are not inherently "positive," such as fear.[1] Some students and educators engage in "place-based education" in order to improve their "sense(s) of place," as well as to use various aspects of place as educational tools in general.
Geographic place
To understand sense of place, the
geographic concept of space needs first to be defined. Geographic space is the space that encircles the planet, through which biological life moves. It is differentiated from "outer space" and "inner space" (inside the mind). One definition of place, proposed by Tuan, is that a place comes into existence when humans give meaning to a part of the larger, undifferentiated space. Any time a location is identified or given a name, it is separated from the undefined space that surrounds it. Some places, however, have been given stronger meanings, names or definitions by society than others. These are the places that are said to have a strong "Sense of Place."
Cultural geographers, anthropologists, sociologists and urban planners study why certain places hold special meaning to particular people or peoples. Places said to have a strong "sense of place" have a strong identity and character that is deeply felt by local inhabitants and by many visitors. Sense of place is a social phenomenon that exists independently of any one individual's perceptions or experiences, yet is dependent on human engagement for its existence. Such a feeling may be derived from the natural environment, but is more often made up of a mix of natural and cultural features in the landscape, and generally includes the people who occupy the place. The sense of place may be strongly enhanced by the place being written about by poets, novelists and historians, or portrayed in art or music, and more recently, through modes of codification aimed at protecting, preserving and enhancing places felt to be of value (such as the "World Heritage Site" designations used around the world, the English "Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty" controls and the American "National Historic Landmark" designation).
Places that lack a "sense of place" are sometimes referred to as "placeless" or "inauthentic." Placeless landscapes are those that have no special relationship to the places in which they are located—they could be anywhere. Roadside strip shopping
malls, gas/petrol stations and convenience stores, fast food chains, and chain department stores are often cited as examples of placeless landscape elements. Even some historic sites or districts that have been heavily commercialized (commodified) for tourism and new housing estates are sometimes defined as having lost their sense of place. A classic description of such placeless places is Gertrude Stein's "there is no there there". (

I will post images and articles relating to sense of place and hope that you will join in. So get posting....Cheers Harry