Having decided that documentary photography is the route I wanted to go down for this project I started focussing on photographers who used this type of photography to create their narrative.
After having a lecture and hearing Ellen talk about her work, her personal story ‘Previous Personality’ stood out to me. Her project explores her relationship to her mother as she develops dementia. Ellen explained in the lecture that for her it was a documentation that lasted 3 years over all, her mother started to forget that Ellen was her daughter when she started taking photos.
Some interesting words to describe this documentation from Ellen that I found on her website say.. “Photography as a medium seemed to serve the situation well. It was a record to capture my dying mother, a means to examine our state, and perhaps to create an alternative family album.”
When looking at the images in the lecture I found myself to have an emotional attachment to her work, it was very powerful and the photographs really spoke for themselves.
Here’s some photographs from the series:
Ellen’s work has inspired me to change my idea completely..
When I went to Berlin in April last year I bought a beautiful book called ‘Anna & Eve’ By Viktoria Sorochinski, and was even really lucky to hear her talk about it at the book signing. The book is a long term project (lasting from 2005 – 2012) which contains staged images which reveal the relationship between a mother and her daughter from Montreal. When Viktoria met Anna and Eve in 2005 the mother was 23 and her daughter was 3 years old. The images in the book are absolutely beautiful, despite being staged I can see a clear relationship between the mother and daughter, as this is a narrative story which goes by a linear structure it highlights their relationship as they both grow up.
Here’s a few images from the book..
We was lucky enough to have a lecture with photographer Finn Taylor, he showed us lots of his images, told us about his life and how he’d been able to develop into a successful stable career after much hard work.
I found his work really interesting, he has documented many things from British youths in chicken shops to East London Team GB athletes leading up to the 2012 Olympics. Finn’s diverse scope of variety in his work is definitely one of the things I enjoyed seeing from his talk, along with the great amount of advice/tips he gave us.
Some of the advice Finn gave us was..
- Have a story – its important
- Try and get past the ‘staged’ look within your photos
- Plan everything down to the bone, have yourself a back up plan – Be prepared
- Be thick skinned, don’t take everything to heart
- Practice, Practice, Develop
- Push past boundaries and create something different
- Don’t force anyone to do anything, let them be comfortable. create environments for them to feel at ease
- Start building your contacts now, talk to people
- Get advice, take it on board and take criticism too
Here’s a few images of Finns that I enjoyed the most..
( I do not own any of the above images, they are from Finn Taylors Website http://www.finntaylor.com/index.html )