The use of conflicting and un-natural colour tones, lighting styles, inclusion of technological props and influences are a reflection of the state of mind during long periods without human interaction in a 'real-life' social interaction. The societal standards, deadlines and constant barrage stimulus that normally surrounds us is replaced with unending banality. Social media and online networking becoming our only contact with the outside world compounding the need to play for the camera whilst being our only source of socialisation, distraction, entertainment and information. As someone who lives alone, the period of lockdown has become a period of short attention spans and lack of drive. A never ending long weekend where every little job becomes an excuse for a rest as there is no deadline for completion and no accountability to others, friends or family. The only constant being my dog, my dependant, her walks and feeding times the only remnant of routine. The sporadic nature of emotion is reflected in the variety of images presented, some days are relatively normal whilst others, despite being filled with stimulus, stir little in the way of interest or joy. Occasionally, there can be a special moment that brings a smile and others when it feels as if no one would notice you were gone. I call the collection 'Self Isolated - 1 Day in Lockdown' so to gather the set into a time frame which signifies the constant shifting of mood and emphasising the longevity of the restrictions.
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This collection of images was captured and collated after a recent shopping spree, of photographic books for research, revealed various types of messages, items and notations within used copies of the titles I bought. Each one a little peek into a strangers life, past and connection with the book. I found it interesting how it related to my own past experiences with being gift books but also how, where and when the notes were made or placed within the book.
Nights Out Aren't What They Used To Be
A series of images shot on the first Saturday night of the 2020 lockdown. Each scene is from the Northern Quarter and surrounding areas in Manchester at approximately 9pm.
We Clapped, So It's All OK
The national lockdowns in2020 lead to the weekly Clap for the NHS. A tribal act intended to unite and elevate the risk and struggle of front-line workers, with the goal of influencing the general population to follow the restrictions. Instead we saw a symbol followed for fear of public ostracisation and the true individual action of littering and abandoning the guidelines.
Street photography has been around since the inception of photography as a medium. It's a genre of work that I enjoy both researching and creating as it presents us with a vision of everyday life otherwise unseen and unknown. whenever I'm not working on a commission or project I like to soak up the atmosphere of my home city Manchester looking for the sights and scenes which epitomise what it means to be Mancunian.
1 Hour of Lockdown
Throughout 2020 the only opportunity to leave home was for the 1 hour exercise limit per day. in that time I decided to proactively create, to record and muse over the now strange sights of normality.
What Jasmine Smelt
Jasmine is my rescue dog and best friend for many years. I often walk with her to and from places I need to go and most often to a place where I can play games with her in a semi controlled way. This series was a personal decision to let Jazz take control of several walks and lead the way. Mainly as I found I tended to also be rushing and hurrying around our pre-set route and destinations. I found myself thinking of what she sees and smells and how she interprets the world. I also thought of how I myself was the cause of our hasty walks and with this series I took the time to enjoy the experience of being with her.
This is Not a Photograph of a Policeman
‘This is Not a Photograph of a Policeman’ Saturday 19th September 2020, four days prior to the introduction of stricter restrictions of the gathering of people and opening hours of hospital venues during the resurgence of Covid-19 infections. How do people react when presented with information outside of their everyday routine? Do they stop and examine, turn away and ignore, carry on unaware or destroy it? At 10am Manchester interacted with a cardboard policeman carrying a bundle of deflated latex gloves and a message of ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’. At 11.15am it was removed by Arndale Security assisted by a homeless man. I don’t know whether I should be annoyed by its short life or worried it lasted so long.
(Vicarious) Self Portrait
An exploration of the meaning of self and the ‘Portrait’ Through this set of images I hope to capture the concept of the portrait being more a reflection of the artist than an insight to the subject. The portrait is a result of many decisions made by the photographer, those decisions tainted by their observations, pre-conceptions and agenda. At some point the product of those decisions is more the interpretation of the photographer than the representation of the subject. The ability to manipulate and alter the image leaves us open to believing someone looks or even acts a certain way. Photographers can create masks, beauty or deceit. In many ways photographers are, through their subject, taking a self portrait albeit vicariously.
The experience of a shower but in imagery, view this whilst playing rain sounds and the image becomes visual texture.
Salford, Manchester has always been a particularly hard hit area by poverty, lack of engagement, education and general well being. However with the growth of MediaCity the area has become known for the northern hub of high earning creatives and media. Against a backdrop of the lowest national rates of life standards the idea of accessibility's blocked by the inherent financial and education struggles of the local residents.