Project 2 ‘layered, complex and mysterious…’

Researching photographers that use light from certain times of the day in their images

site blocked

Researching Sally Mann and Michael Schimdt I was blocked again ,The Amercan Suburb x has been blocked for some reason. I have sent the relevant authorities an email via their site, will it do any good, doubt it.

Sally Mann

I resorted to watching Youtube video interviews with Sally Mann and various journalists. Some of Sally Mann’s Southern landscape images are very haunting which reminds me of pictorialism images probably because they have been produced by a 8x 10 large format bellows camera. Sally Mann was named ‘America’s Best Photographer’ by Time magazine in 2001. Sally Mann photographs what she loves and she does it well.


Michael Schmidt

I looked at these and actually thought ‘what?’ . The artist refused to quote his own work,  Dr Markus Hienzelmann, Museum Morsbrioch Leverkusen said this about his work

‘Micheal Schmidt’s ability to translate apparently contradictory elements of his photography into a valid form puts him in an outstanding position among contemporary photographers. though he adopts an unusual position with his constantly different approach to photographic and social questions, his innovative project- led working methods and his extreme commitment have made him a model for generation of young photographers’.

From viewing the images as a series I don’t think Michael Schmidt’s images represent or are related to consumption in any way shape or form. Obviously this is just my opinion but the series of images seemed disjointed from an apple to what appears to be an image of fish on a TV screen.

Feeling a bit disgruntled about the photography of Michael Schmidt I did some more research on his images. To see if I can change my mind about the non descript dullness of his portfolio images which are award winning.

Now to be fair to me and my initial opinion, the images that are shown together as a series on the link given in the coursework do not convey the full set of ‘Lebensmittel’ ( see the Guardian links above for the full set of images ). Seeing the full portfolio and the way its arranged together is quite impressive. He repeats shapes, curves, angles and squares in his grid of images, some with colour and some without. His subject of global industrialization of food production becomes more apparent and the scale of his investigation was huge.

Has my opinion changed ?  Yes for the collective works but I would of liked more controversial images to represent the subject I think that is why I am struggling. I see the art but not the point.

I looked at the other shortlisted candidates and I preferred images by Hong Hao. His images had colour and the theme was more clear and simple yet showed skillfully just how much consumption is in our daily life.

These photographers who were also shortlisted were impressive with the use of social documentary images.

These are all just my opinions which are free and not for sale

 Eugene Atget

The link given in the coursework didn’t work for me so I found this one. Its the NGA’s Biography for Atget.

I also read up on Eugene Atget again  ( Atget was discussed in exercise 1.3. Line, Project 2 Visual Skills, Part 1)

Eugene Atget p30-37 How to read a photograph Lessons from master photographers by Ian Jeffrey. Abrams.

Looking through many of Atget works you can see which shots he took during mid day and which were late afternoon. This is one of my favorites.

I love the composition, use of the shadows and the patterns of light. Out of the three photographers mentioned in this part of the course I prefer Atget’s work for the sheer range and scope of it.


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