Main Brief – Research

Photography can only represent the present. Once photographed, the subject becomes part of the past. – Berenice Abbott

Mevagissey Trip

Research began in Mevagissey, Cornwall. A trip was taken to the small fishing village in the Southern Cornish town, to act as the first location for the Decisive Moment brief.

Here, I was able to photograph the working harbor, dozens of fishing boats and fishermen that worked amongst it all.

Some of my Mevagissey Trip shots –

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Contact Sheet

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Glasgow Trip

The second research trip took place in Glasgow, Scotland. In comparison to the quaint village of Mevagissey, Glasgow was jam packed with a vast variety of people.

Having a photoshoot set in a city, allowed for a stronger decisive moment image to be captured, as the location boasted a variety of different opportunities.

Some of my Glasgow Trip shots –

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Contact Sheet

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Christmas Party

Whilst back at home for Christmas, another photoshoot was conducted at a friend’s house party. Here, the main subject, and focus, was the cat, Lola.

Lola spent the night within the Christmas tree, posing with the lights, baubles, and tinsel, thus showing her to be the perfect model.

Some of my Christmas Party shots –

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Contact Sheet

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Birthday Shoot

The final photoshoot which was conducted for the Decisive Moment brief, was based inside my home. On the day of my Mum’s and Aunty’s 48th birthday, I playfully took a variety of different shots.

Here, I stuck to a black and white design, as I felt it strongly portrayed the feels and emotions better than fun colour.

Some of my Birthday Shoot shots –

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Contact Sheet

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QUOTE

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Major Brief – The Decisive Moment

“There is a creative fraction of a second when you are taking a picture. Your eye must see a composition or an expression that life itself offers you, and you must know with intuition when to click the camera. That is the moment the photographer is creative,” he said. “Oop! The Moment! Once you miss it, it is gone forever.”– Henri Cartier-Bresson

One of the most famous books within the history of Photography is the 1952 publication The Decisive Moment – or Images à la Sauvette in French.

Produced by French humanist photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson, the publication was based on the 17th century quote by Cardinal de Retz, “Il n’y a rien dans ce monde qui n’ait un moment décisif”, which roughly translates to “There is nothing in this world that does not have a decisive moment.” By allowing himself to apply this to his photographic style, Cartier-Bresson thus stated, “To me, photography is the simultaneous recognition, in a fraction of a second, of the significance of an event as well as of a precise organization of forms which give that event its proper expression.”

It has been said that the 158 pages, containing 126 photos and a 4,500 word philosophical preface, has since influenced a vast range of generations and photographers, thus becoming part of the world’s collective memory.

“Photography is not like painting” – Henri Cartier-Bresson

Task 3 – Major Brief

“Whether it is for commercial work, self-expression or documentary, the photographer needs to convey a message and engage the viewer. This project allows you to explore the issues of communication and creativity as well as demonstrate that you have understood various photographic techniques in order to create a series of engaging pictures.” – Paul Hazell

The Decisive Moment

Brief

After experimentation with a range of techniques and ideas produce a set of four photographic images that individually capture a decisive moment. This means taking a shot at the optimal moment that best sums up the pictures content. The four pictures could have a related theme, concept or genre.

Good camera techniques, a workable concept and the ability to identify effective potential subject matter will produce a successful range of photographs – so both creative thought and technical ability will be vital to achieve good results.

NOTE: The techniques adopted should be driven by the message/theme that is trying to be conveyed.

Always remember to consider:

  • Concept – What is the theme? Is it experimental and creative?
  • Technique – How will it be created? Does it enhance the use of camera skills?
  • Audience – How will you convey the message? Is this way effective?

Task 2 – Autumn

SEASON of mists and mellow fruitfulness! 

Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;

Conspiring with him how to load and bless

With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run; 

– John Keats, To Autumn 

Take a photo or series of photos that visually define or explore ‘Autumn’.

The second task given to us was to “take a photo or series of photos that visually define or explore ‘Autumn’.” From this, I ventured out in my home town of Alsager, to take some shots.

I decided to base my photoshoot here, rather in Worcester, as I felt my home town portrayed the season more clearly. Alsager is a small village located within Stoke-on-Trent, in the North West of England. The location is very rural, with lots of greenery to capture. As you can see in the photos below, the trees perfectly caught the changing of the seasons, via their crisp, red leaves, which contrasted against the fewer green tones left.

Some of my Autumn shots –

Contact Sheet

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Task 1 – Photoshop

Try to be subtle – avoid it looking like Frankenstein’s monster – we want to believe we could actually meet the individual you have created. – Paul Hazell

Our first given task for this module, was to collect both side on and front facing photographs of ourselves and our given partner. These images would then be used to create a photomontage of both our faces.

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Since my partner decided to work with someone else, I took the initiate and used an existing image, taken from Google.co.uk. Here, I was thus able to acquire a photograph which best suited my needs; a side on image with a clear/white background.

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After selecting the appropriate image for the task, I set upon using Adobe Photoshop CC, to create my photomontage. Now, to start, I imported both my chosen model photograph and the image taken of myself into the programme and aligned them together. By aligning both the images, I can allow the layered image beneath, to be fully inline with the image on top, thus allowing for a perfect merge.

Once this has been done, a clipping mask was added to the top image (of myself) and here, I began to edit away parts of the photo. By doing this, you can allow the layer beneath to emerge on top, creating a merged effect.

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Now the image of myself was edited black and white, to fit the colour tones of the other photo below, and the harsh lines of the clipping mask were erased using a soft brush and a low opacity. Such brush settings allowed for a smooth constancy and life-like look to be achieved.

Final Image

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