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In todays afternoon lesson we were to present our final photoshop image to the class. Our final outcome of my group space surfing on a Giottos rocket blaster seemed to amuse our fellow students. This was the reaction we hoped for as our intention was for the image to be comical.  Our peers were impressed by how we experimented using the rocket blaster portraying the idea in a completely different way. As a group we wanted to have fun experimenting with our Photoshop skills as well as our layering and masking techniques. We cleverly thought of using a object used within photography practice.

As a whole we were impressed with our final outcome. The positioning of each person on the rocket blaster was well thought through and ended looking quite natural. It was important that the group created a variety of poses as we wanted to show our own personalities.

When receiving our peer feedback we noticed that mentioned that our Photoshop skills needed to be worked on. As you can see on the portrait images of ourselves there is a vague white line around the outside. This was due to a lack of time and having to produce a quick final image. It was not noticed at the time when we shot the images but my clothing and Natalie’s are dark. It was not till after when Photoshoped together that we blended into the background of the image. If we were to do something like this again we would have to take this into consideration when shooting. As our images were shrunk down in Photoshop they did slightly pixelate and blur. For next time we need to think about our image properties.

Overall for a small, quick task I was very happy with how it turned out. I felt that we clearly linked our image with our inspiration. I really enjoyed working with students I had not worked with before, producing creative, innovative work.

Our Interpretation of “All the World Is Staged”

During this week my group (Molly Newton, Natalie Newman and Alisha Tarrant) have been working on the theme “All the World Is Stage”. Once we were set into groups we discussed to meet at the beginning of the week to create an idea ready to make into a final image. We all were set on the idea of taking portraits of ourselves in the studio producing different body positions as well as photographing an object we would be Photoshoped onto later. After that we also sources a found image of the internet. We chose an image of space as it link with the Giottos Rocket Air Blower we photographed in the studio. As we had previously learnt in our Photoshop sessions we used our new found skills of masking on Photoshop all the images together to create our final image.

We were mostly inspired by an artist named Slinkachu. The purpose of his work is to reflect the loneliness of living in a big city although his work still has elements of humour to them. It was key that humour was to be portrayed in our work and I feel that as a group we achieved this. You could see that our practiced photoshop skills had paid off.

11040312_896561643729306_1048521186_n
Image by Madeleine Page, Natalie Newman, Alisha Tarrant and Molly Newton.

All the World is Stage- Slinkach

British artists Slinkachu born 1979, is a London based artist who creates very small street- based installations and then photographs them after both from far away and up close.

Slinkachu began “Little People” in 2006, as respite from his day job in advertising. This series involves remodelling and painting miniature model train set characters which he then places in the streets ready to photographs them. His work is unique, fantastical and unsettling, he shows urban life under the microscope.

When Slinkachu has his perfect shot he leaves his mini models to defend for themselves, only being held down with a blob of superglue on each foot. He likes to leave his models there to see which ones will last the longest, very rarely will he go back to check them.

“I’ve always been interested in small things”, says Slinkachu. “My dad made me a train set when I was younger but I was never really interested in the trains, it was always the figures, houses and trees that fascinated me.”

Slinkachu quotes “There was one piece in Germany which had a cigarette in it. When we walked past it a few hours later, someone had taken the cigarette but had left the character. It was eerie.”

He explains that he places them on beer cans, pavements, scattered around London streets, including crevices and cracks. For us it is invisible/ annonymous that without our awareness of space we need to be careful where we put our feet because without knowing we may inadvertently be killing some people of the small world.

This artist was perfect for us to look at as it was exactly the idea we had in mind. We wanted to make this small project unique to us as a group so we decided to take portraits of ourselves and use those instead as the characters but still use the same concept.

Slinkachu
Slinkachu
Slinkachu
Slinkachu- Milk
Slinkachu- Boys Own Adventure.
Slinkachu- Boys Own Adventure.
Slinkachu- They're not pets.
Slinkachu- They’re not pets.

Anon, 2015, Slinkach.com-Home. Andipa Gallery, Last Accessed: 23/02/15. http://www.slinkachu.com/home

Layers Of Reality- Jonathan Lewis

British photographer Jonathan Lewis was born in 1970 and lives/works in London. He makes photo-based art that explore themes of production via the elemental properties of the pixel. Combining pixellation with ‘film noir-ish’ photographs of London’s upscale retailers. One could say these works are a critique of consumer culture. Lewis photographs subjects such as cigarettes to candy wrappers.

He offen processes his images beyond recognition, creating abstracted images. Despite these manipulations, Lewis’ works are still recognisable to the viewers. His work takes form of digital prints, sculptures books and videos. Lewis has had work exhibited internationally and is currently represented by Bonni Benrubi Gallery in New York, USA.

A good example is his series “See Candy” which was created in 2001. He created slick, coloured- striped abstractions influenced by the colours and imagery of candy labels. His work is clearly influenced by the Pop Art movement, capturing the repetition and mass production, without offering any explicit critique.

Jonathan Lewis- 9 Works.
Jonathan Lewis- 9 Works.

Another interesting set of work is “Walmart”. This is a series of images in which he has taken in several different food stores. He has then pixelated the images in order to make them abstract. Both these series of work use similar techniques but are completely different ideas.

Jonathan Lewis-Aldi 2006
Jonathan Lewis-Aldi 2006
Jonathan Lewis-Asda 2006.
Jonathan Lewis-Asda 2006.
Jonathan Lewis-Carrefour, 2006.
Jonathan Lewis-Carrefour, 2006.

I find Lewi’s work interesting as he has explored a wide range of experimentation. He has used many different objects, subjects and locations in order to achieve this. His series of works show his own style and creativity. Lewis has thought outside the box and created something that I have never seen before. I am interested in trying something like this my self in my future projects.

Jonathan Lewis. Last Accessed: 10/02/15. http://www.jgdlewis.com/index.html

Anon, 2015. Jonathan Lewis- 9 Artworks, Bio & Shows on Artsy. Last Accessed: 10/02/15. https://www.artsy.net/artist/jonathan-lewis

Scanned Images

Today I had to bring my scanned images that I had independently scanned last week. This morning I had an hour to scan and produce more images that I would need in my later photoshop session. In my photoshop session we learned how to create a layered image. We played around with different settings and experimented with quick short cuts. Using the basic settings such as exposure, brightness, contrast, hue, saturation as well as the opacity I worked on developing my photoshop editing skills .

Following on we had a group discussion about all our images which were displayed on a slide show. We received great feedback on our final images as a group. Amongst all the images shown by the class there was a variety of different scans produced using negatives, prints and sentimental objects. I was intrigued with how personal some of the images were, ranging from weddings photos to childhood memories. Where as on the other hand some images had no purpose or meaning to them what so ever.

There were images that were found at flee markets and charity shops. When looking at these images it was sad to see how someone had giving those images away, something that was once personal to themselves was now in the hands of a stranger. Every image had its own meaning and story behind it for the person that produced them, however the same images could have been interpreted in a different way by the viewers.

Here are a few examples of my own images. For these I experimented with changing the hue and saturation as well as HDR. My aim was to make my images look abstract and unusual, producing something different to my previous works.

Image 1
Image 1
Image 2
Image 2
Image 3
Image 3
Image 4
Image 4

Roman Pyatkovka

Pyatkovka was born in 1955 in Kharkiv, Ukraine where he currently lives and works. He graduated from the Faculty of Electric Power of the Kharkiv Polytechnic Institute in 1978. Began his career under communism, and much of his work is aimed at subverting state control. For a long time he worked in the Drama Theatre. For 8 years as the main lighting designer.

He realised that this was not what he wanted to do in the future and became an artistic photographer. Roman was inspired by Boris Mikhailov (winner of the Hasselblad Foundation International Award in Photography) and soon became his teacher and mentor. He became a full time photographer in 1980 and has since had numerous exhibitions world-wide exhibiting some of his well known work such as: “Ghosts. Famine 30-ies”, “I come from childhood”, “Games of libido” and “Bitch Love”. I was inspired by his series “Soviet photo (2012)” which is about an eara which has forever gone. It was the only magazine available to professional photographers and amateurs in the Soviet Union from 1926 to 1992.

In this series of work he combined the ‘official’ photographs from ‘Soviet Photo’ combining with his works as an underground photographer of the time. He quotes ” I risked imprisonment for these pictures”. He also quotes that “When looking at these pictures today, we are able to reflect on the ideals and disappointments, censorship and creativity of that time”.

I was influenced by his work as he cleverly overlaps the layers together in order to create an image that is unique. When looking at his images it makes you think about why he has created it in that way and how some parts are not obvious straight away. Simiular to David Thomas Smith he has adjusted the contrast and hue to bring out the colours within the image. I think that this is very important when layering up your images as some parts could be drowned out.

Roman Pyatkovka- Soviet Photo
Roman Pyatkovka- Soviet Photo
Roman Pyatkovka- Soviet Photo
Roman Pyatkovka- Soviet Photo
Roman Pyatkovka- Soviet Photo
Roman Pyatkovka- Soviet Photo

Anon, Soviet Photo (2012)- Roman Pyatkovka Photography, Last Accessed: 02/02/15. http://cargocollective.com/pyatkovka/Soviet-photo-2012

David Thomas Smith

Based in Dublin, David Thomas Smith is an Irish artist who graduated from the University of Wales, Newport, where he obtained a (BA Hons) in Documentary Photography. He has exhibited his work in several European countries.

“By the end of the 20th century, the problem was no longer how to create a new media object such as an image; the new problem was how to find an object that already exists somewhere. If you want a particular image chances are it already exists.”   p.35 – ‘The Language of New Media’ – Lev Manovich

Smith’s work is multi-dimensional and can be interpreted in many ways. He makes his work rich in detail and large in scale. This series of work is called “Anthropocene” which is digital photographs assembles from a large number of Google Earth images which show some of the world’s most recognisable structure and urban landscapes. The images are then both horizontally and vertically mirrored to create a visually striking image. The hue and saturation have been adjusted in order to bring out the vibrant colours within the images. Closely followed by his other series called “Arecibo” which is very similar, again shooting landscapes and urban scenes. He has created his work to be abstract and unusual making the viewer think.

ANTHROPOCENE Beijing International Airport, Beijing,  People’s Republic of China, 2009-10
ANTHROPOCENE
Beijing International Airport, Beijing,
People’s Republic of China, 2009-10
ANTHROPOCENE Three Gorges Dam,  Sandouping, Yiling, Hubei,  People's Republic of China. 2010-11
ANTHROPOCENE
Three Gorges Dam,
Sandouping, Yiling, Hubei,
People’s Republic of China. 2010-11
ARECIBO Industrial Revolution - Northern England.
ARECIBO
Industrial Revolution – Northern England.
ARECIBO Nuclear Age:  Trinity Nuclear Test Site, Nevada, USA - Testing of Early Atomic Bombs.
ARECIBO
Nuclear Age:
Trinity Nuclear Test Site, Nevada, USA – Testing of Early Atomic Bombs.

David Thomas Smith, ANTHOPOCENE David Thomas Smith, Last Accessed: 2/02/15. http://www.david-thomas-smith.com/ANTHROPOCENE.

David Thomas Smith, ARECIBO David Thomas Smith, Last Accessed: 2/02/15. http://www.david-thomas-smith.com/ARECIBO

Appropriation

Appropriation is intentionally coping and borrowing preexisting objects and images. It is a strategy that has been used for many years from a variety of artists. It took on a new significance in the mid-20th century both in Britain and America. There was a rise of consumerism of popular images through mass media outlets from television to magazines.

It can be tracked back all the way to cubist collages and constructions of Georges Braque, Juan Gris and Picasso made from 1912 onwards, in oder to represent themselves they would use real subjects such as newspapers.

Pablo Picasso Bowl of Fruit, Violin and Bottle 1914
Pablo Picasso
Bowl of Fruit, Violin and Bottle 1914
Georges Braque Bottle and Fishes circa 1910-2
Georges Braque
Bottle and Fishes circa 1910-2
Juan Gris Bottle of Rum and Newspaper 1913-4
Juan Gris
Bottle of Rum and Newspaper 1913-4

Later, surrealism had a huge impact of the use of appropriation in objects and collages show for example with Salvador Dali’s “Lobster Telephone”.

Salvador Dal Lobster Telephone 1936
Salvador Dal
Lobster Telephone 1936

Appropriation has raised a few questions of authenticity, authorship and originality and it belongs to the modernist tradition of art.

I was fascinated with what appropriation actually was. As quoted fro Tate Online “Appropriation in art and art history refers to the practice of artists using pre-existing objects or images in their art with little transformation of the original”. The difference of how layering two unattached and unconnected images can create a spectacular piece of work when combined together.

TATE, n.d. Appropriation Online. Last Accessed: 01/02/15. Available from: http://www.tate.org.uk/learn/online-resources/glossary/a/appropriation

MoMA Learning. MoMA| Appropriation. Last Accessed: 01/02/15.  http://www.moma.org/learn/moma_learning/themes/pop-art/appropriation

Appropriation has been used extensively by artists since the 1980s.

Something Borrowed, Something New- Jonny Briggs

Jonny Briggs born in 1985, lives and works in London UK. Briggs studied at the Chelsea College of Art (2008) and the Royal College of Art (2011) in London. He searches for lost parts of his childhood and tries to think outside the reality into which he was socialised and to create a new reality with his self and parents. Briggs uses photomontages, builds sets, disguises, repaints and remodels to make the viewer question the supposed photographic reality.

Very similar to Julia Borrisova, Jonny Briggs has taken old images and modernised them. He has experimented with giving them a new meaning. Briggs plays around with the images in order to make them his own. The images that he uses are family portraits as well as using some images personal to himself.

Jonny Brigg quotes ‘Photography provides me with an opportunity to play with perceptions of what’s real and what’s not”. 

“My work perverts and transgresses the family photograph, re- rendering the past and role-reversing my parents and me; now it is me capturing them”.

He has taken place in many solo exhibitions such as :

Solo Show: Simon Oldfield Gallery, London
Solo Show; White Project, Paris
Solo Show: FaMa Gallery, Verona, Italy
The Catlin Guide, London Art Fair
Out of Focus: Saatchi Gallery, London

These images are from a series called “Sisters head upon my body , 2011”. All these images are from his own family albums. Briggs has cut through the image/frame at a diagonal and manipulated it into an image which comes across comical to the viewer. He has carefully played around on Photoshop to create images that look disjointed. When looking at his images it makes you think about why he has made it in that particular way.

Sister's head upon my body, Adapted family photograph, 2011
Head upon Pet’s body, Adapted family photograph, 2011
Sister's head upon my body, Adapted family photograph, 2011
Sister’s head upon my body, Adapted family photograph, 2011
Sister's head upon my body, Adapted family photograph, 2011
Sister’s head upon my body, Adapted family photograph, 2011

Other examples of experimental work that Briggs has produced is this image of his mouth during speech pinned over the eyes of his ancestors. He uses collaging in order to create an image with a completely different meaning. By placing his lips over the eyes of this person is covers up their identity, this leaves the viewers thinking who could it possibly be.

My mouth during speech pinned over the eyes of my ancestors
My mouth during speech pinned over the eyes of my ancestors

Jonny Briggs, http://www.jonnybriggs.com, Last Accessed: 28/01/15. http://www.jonnybriggs.com

Anon, 2013, Jonny Briggs|High House Photography, Last Accessed: 28/01/15. http://www.highhousegallery.com/exhibited-artists/jonny-briggs/