Assignment 3: assignment brief, initial response & approach

Send a set of six to eight high quality photographic prints on the theme of the “decisive moment” to your tutor. Whilst street photography is the traditional subject of the decisive moment, it doesn’t have to be. The aim is not to tell a story but to work naturally as a series with a linking theme, whether location, event or period of time.

Initial response

I have a strong response to this brief and a clear view of what I want to present.  There is a particular series of images that I have wanted to take for some time and this brief provides the opportunity to explore it.  Rather than explore two or more different approaches, I intend to explore a single idea initially through this blog and the OCA forums to refine and approach my thoughts and end up with and effective set of prints.

The linking theme for the images is the decline of nuclear power in the UK.  It could be the decline of any big primary industry in the UK, but I have a particular interest in a location linked to the nuclear industry.

Approach

The nuclear industry in the UK is in decline.  The future is alternative fuels.  The nuclear industry is at a decisive moment where it’s very future hangs in the balance. I intend to showcase that decline using techniques and ideas which I have gathered along the way.  As well as a linking theme, I intend to create a strong visual link between the images by presenting them in a set way, using the same format and style image to image.

Traditionally we have used picture postcards, typically vivid colour, to show the idyllic place we have just visited.  I intend to use a similar picture postcard format but rather than glossy colour, I will use matt card and print the images in monochrome.  This creates a sense of the past, while retaining a jewel like quality for the actual images, presented like special treasures. The images themselves will be a contrast to the materials used to show them.

I have in mind the photographs of water towers by Bernd and Hilla Becher with there highly curated approach to framing images of similar subjects in different locations.  Their use of black and white brings a link between images while also introducing a degree of separation from normal through the removal of colour from the images, an approach which I think will work well with this assignment.

My intended use of the postcard format is to bring the sense of a historical reminder of a place or event to a subject that is on the brink of becoming historical. Below are two versions of the postcard, one printed as a borderless print the other printed with a frame. At this stage I prefer the second, borderless print on the paper which is Hahnemuhle Photo Rag 308gsm matt card.

 


Bibliography

  1. Bloomfield, R (2014) Photography 1: Expressing your Vision., OCA 2017, pp.72-73
  2. https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/bernd-becher-and-hilla-becher-water-towers-p81238, accessed 3 July 2018