Looking into Book Layouts

So I thought it was best to start researching into book layouts, I’m going to design mine on InDesign but just have no clue how to lay it out. Here’s some of my inspirations so far..

 

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I quite like the more simple designs, the ones with smaller text and less images. I think for my final book piece the less I have on the pages will suite my narrative. The spreads that have a photo over two pages are quite nice as well, they make a statement.

 

What do you guys think?

Anastasia Taylor-Lind ‘The National Womb’

Having found it quite hard to find photography that involves documenting around pregnancy and birth i stumbled across the work of Anastasia’s.

The following information is about the body of work taken from her website:

The series of images from ‘The National Womb’ are in connection with the “birth encouragement program” introduced in 2008, it distributes cash payments to newlyweds for each baby born, this is to repoulate the region after the effects the 1991-1994 had left.

The conflict started when the Soviet Union collapsed. Nagorno Karabakh’s ethnic Armenians went to war with Azerbaijan, backed by neighboring Armenia. The war left 65,000 ethnic Armenians and a further 40,000 ethnic Azeris displaced. The Muslim Azeri population never returned, and neither did many of the Armenians who had fled. While a ceasefire was declared in 1994, there has been no peace settlement yet between Armenia and Azerbaijan.

On the 2nd of September this year, Nagorno Karabakh celebrated 20 years of independence, yet remains unrecognized by the international community. Life is not easy in the republic. There is high unemployment, low salaries, few opportunities and the young continue to leave in search of better futures abroad.

Since its introduction 4 years ago, the “birth encouragement program” is credited for an increased birthrate of 25.5% from 2145 recorded births in 2007 to 2694 in 2010. The program is administered by the Department of Social Security which oversees the payments to married couples of approximately €575 (300,000 ad) at their wedding. They are paid €190 (100,000 ad) for the first baby born, €380 (200,000 ad) for the second, €950 (500,000 ad) for the third and €1350 (700,000 ad) for a fourth. Families with 6 children under the age of 18 are given a house.

Nagorno Karabakhs baby boom was also sparked in 2008 by a mass wedding on the 16th October that was held for 674 couples. The event was funded by private donations from several wealthy Armenian diaspora businessmen including Levon Hairapetian and Ruben Vardanian and couples who participated receive privately funded higher payments of €1400 ($2000) for the mass wedding, €1400 ($2000) for the first child, €3500 ($5000) for the second and increasing amounts up to €70,000 ($100,000) for the seventh. Figures on the 1st July 2011 show that a total of 693 babies had been born to these mass wedding couples so far. These payments are quite substantial in a region where the average monthly salary is €35 ($50).

Family life in Nagorno Kharabak is deeply traditional and conservative. When women marry they are expected to live with the husbands family and stay at home to raise children and care for their mother and father-in-law. Even within the home men and women live parallel but separate lives. A mans role is to provide for the family financially and fathers play only a small part in child rearing. So, what of the young women who are being paid to increase their nations population, the communities of expectant and young mothers and their daily struggles as women in this unrecognized republic??

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What I found most interesting about Anastasia’s work was her ability to really be just a ‘fly on the wall’ when she takes her photographs, they have a documentary aspect to them whilst being very specific in what she wants to show. I think she does an excellent job in reflecting on the back story to her body of work. The images are predominantly focussing on the women, there is a lack of men within the frame, this highlights their absence and lack of involvement with the birth. The photograph above of the women in the hospital bed, all in the same room with their children could suggest their solitude together as women, they have had the same experience of birth and are lacking support from their partner. The fact that they are all in the same room and not in confined separate areas also highlights the high volume of women giving birth. What also particularly stands out to me in the image of the lady giving birth is that she has been careful with her cropping and selectivity of what she is showing to the viewer, it is enough for us to understand what is going on but not enough to be too graphic.

I suggest anyone interested to have a further look into her other projects!

http://www.anastasiataylorlind.com

 

 

Thursday 13th February – Narrative Review

Overall my review for my digital piece went well, we had to talk about our theme, stratagies we used, experimentation and presentation of the video.

With regards to improving my digital piece to make it even better the comments i got were as follows:

– sort out the sound to make sure it all matches, make it cleaner and flowing

– add more audio and photos to make it longer

– take out my voice from the piece completely, make it specifically about Jo

– double check the transitions to make sure they flow

 

Plan for the next few weeks.. 

– have a back up plan for narrative book piece as idea is not reliable

– keep shooting photos

– carry on research

– organise time effectively for deadline as I will miss out on a week due to work experience

– go to InDesign workshops to see how a book can be put together

– research book types to suit my theme

The Photographers Gallery – Photography, Motherhood and Identity

Absolutely gutted that I didn’t get to see this exhibition at The Photographers Gallery, it had just finished as I started this project damn. Having read about it online it would’ve been so relevant and interesting for my project!

I had a bit of a read from the Photographers Gallery site about it and this is what it says:

“The Photographers’ Gallery presents Home Truths: Photography, Motherhood and Identity, an exhibition exploring representations of motherhood through the works of eight contemporary artists.

The exhibition will aim to challenge long-held stereotypes and sentimental views of motherhood by addressing issues such as gender roles, domesticity, the body and the identity of individuals within the family unit. The work of the eight artists tends to be autobiographical in focus and sits within the documentary genre. Large in both scale and scope, many of the projects span over several years with some still ongoing. Home Truths is curated by Susan Bright.

The work of these two artists from eight stood out to me the most:

Elinor Carucci’s (b. 1971, Israel) series Mother (2004-2013) we see the artist, known for her intimate portraits of her family, extend her practice by working with her children. Through her photographs Carucci expresses her fears of motherhood – that it would result in the loss of her creativity and sense of identity. What she discovered however, were new layers of depth and intensity within herself and her work. Carucci confronts viewers with candid depictions of motherhood – from her changing body to moments of annoyance, frustration and exhaustion but also those of great joy and tenderness.

Fred Hüning’s (b. 1966 Germany) work is comprised of a diaristic trilogy of books, Einer (2010), Zwei (2011) and Drei (2011). Starting in 2005, the books document, in a non-linear way, Hüning and his wife’s journey of love and loss as reflected in everyday moments alongside extraordinary and tragic family events. Einer tells the story of the birth and death of their first child and the struggle which followed as they try and cope with their loss. Zwei shows the couple’s healing process as they attempt to rebuild their relationship and Hüning’s wife discovers she is pregnant again. Drei is a celebration of life and love as the family is made whole again by the arrival of their second son.

I also found these images really interesting because they show the affection and bond between the mother and her newborn..

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Photography By Fred Hüning

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Photography by Elinor Carucci

http://thephotographersgallery.org.uk/photography-motherhood-and-identity