In light of my tutor’s comments regarding my submission for Assignment 5 – Landscape, I’ve realised there were several key areas I could improve on for the assignment. The first consisted of filtering my project down into a slightly less convoluted mishmash of elements so my intentions and points I were trying to make were more obvious. For me this meant removing the corresponding night landscape shots as upon reflection they didn’t contribute too much to the project. Instead I felt they confused what I was trying to convey to the viewer. What I was trying to convey was a message of diversity within the landscape from the people which typically inhabit my surrounding landscape, from the presence of the people themselves on the (already diverse) surrounding landscape. Then there was a slight impermanence factor, reflected by the people’s traces on the landscape indirectly from land use as a second source of information. However, by introducing a third element consisting of variation on the landscape between day and night, I was almost offering the viewer too much information. So, I decided to remove these night shots entirely from the assignment (none of them in my opinion worked better in comparison to their corresponding day shots in conveying this diversity). I did this fairly reluctantly at first because it had been quite arduous to go back to each location and shoot the corresponding nighttime landscape shot afterwards but on this occasion I saw less as more and thought it benefited the project. Therefore the main aspect I wanted to get across was the diversity of the landscape and it’s inhabitants in my local area and I felt this was far more evident from the more varied day shots (with the more prevalent inclusion of people), which were sufficient in my opinion to get this message of diversity across.
Another trait in my photographs my tutor picked up on was the seeming insistence to photograph using the same exact aspect ratio and orientation. While this 3:2, landscape format worked okay in general in my eyes, looking back at the images I could definitely see where cropping may be beneficial. Therefore I endeavoured to experiment with other formats where necessary to further inform the audience what was the focus of each photograph. Furthermore I could now see potential for linking certain photographs which shared similar compositional traits by cropping them in similar ways to accentuate these similarities. Namely Photographs 7 and 11 for Assignment 5 – Landscape offered the possibility of such a cropping treatment and I could foresee would work together well with Photograph 6 as examples of ‘looking to the side’ as explained in my blog post: ‘Inspiration for My Own Self-Directed Project (Assignment 5)’. Here I had been inspired by Alec Soth with Sleeping by the Mississippi (2004) to look to the side. As well as this, putting these images with similar cropping together as a diptych in my proposed final presentation method: a photo book I could foresee working well.
In response to another comment by my tutor, I would like to offer a little more information into how I felt the project went with regards to my self-discovery through the camera. I had stated this was one of the hoped-for outcomes for the conducting the project so close to home and yet hadn’t alluded too much to how I felt this had gone in my summary. It had brought back some memories of old routes I used to walk when I was younger and crucially made me look at my local area in new ways. The significance of this in relation to the course was because the area had changed so much yet was still recognisable made me realise I felt some kind of sentimentality to the place. From this attachment I started to see my local area in a new light – noticing things I wouldn’t normally have noticed in my local area, which could bode well for future projects.
With Photograph 2 – Assignment 5 – Landscape – Amended I cropped in significantly in order to better get my point across to the viewer – all the people at the bus stop were on their smartphones.
For Photograph 4 – Assignment 5 – Landscape – Amended I adopted a 5:4 aspect ratio as I felt it framed the shot better with the people in the frame seeming to be perceivably more eager to get out from work as well as out of the frame!
I chose a more ‘cinematic’ 16:9 aspect ratio to frame the man against the confines of the ‘Edgelands’ he was walking down. For me it gave the photograph an edgier feel.
I used a square 1:! ratio for Photograph 7 – Assignment 5 – Landscape and put it in a diptych as can be seen at the top of the post.
A 4:5 ratio was used here to crop in on the main action in the street – the street football, while still allowing for the viewer to gain an insight into what kind of area/street they were playing on.
I decided to keep Photograph 10 – Assignment 5 – Landscape the same framing because I thought all aspects of the photograph were quite important.
I used a square 1:! ratio for Photograph 11 – Assignment 5 – Landscape and put it in a diptych as can be seen at the top of the post.
Again, cropping in further on the most salient part of the frame for me made it clearer what I was trying to convey to the viewer in Photograph 12 – Assignment 5 – Landscape – Amended.
Simply gently cropping to a 5:4 ratio allowed the photograph for me to appear a bit more balanced in Photograph 13 – Assignment 5 – Landscape – Amended.
I had to think a bit harder for Photograph 14 – Assignment 5 – Landscape – Amended about how to crop it to best keep the important elements and simplify the scene more. I found that by using a portrait 4:5 ratio I could accomplish this.
Although cropping in significantly to a 1:1 square ratio prevented the whole of the building being shown in the frame, I thought this was a bearable expense as I could still show the visible wear on the building and the person crossing the doorway was much more visible like this.
For Photograph 16 – Assignment 5 – Landscape – Amended I felt I could only crop in slightly (to a 5:4 aspect ratio) while still maintaining the important elements and preserving the vibrancy evident in the frame.
Similarly to Photograph 16 – Assignment 5 – Landscape – Amended I only cropped in slightly to a 5:4 ratio because in my eyes most of the frame except for the edges on either side were important.