Nick Veasey


X-Ray (2008)

Nick was born in London in 1962, he starting in an advertising career. Nick embarked on photography before experimenting with X-Ray imaging; he started photographing mundane objects and the human body. Nick’s work provoked interesting responses. The influence subsequently made Nick intrigued by the perception of society only viewing the face value of an image and yet we impose an opinion to which we then consider factual.

The X-Rays immediately removed the superficial layers this radically altered the appearance and reduced the interiors of the objects; focusing on another dimension, this created new meanings to the mundane objects and bodies. He wanted to highlight that we are under constant surveillance, we can be viewed multi-dimensionally at any time, and therefore his work almost adopts a dystrophic principle. In 2008, he published a book about all the X-Rays he had studied.

“I like to challenge this automatic way that we react to just physical appearance by highlighting the, often surprising, inner beauty.”

This work empowers me to create a metaphoric approach in my photographs, I wish to adopt the same principle “we shouldn’t judge a book by its cover” there needs to be a wider scrutiny and greater investigative work before forming an opinion, therefore creating depth. I thoroughly enjoy the way of Nick looks into how society becomes obsessed with the face value of self and instantly if you were to see somebody with lymphoma, the preconceived notion of illness would suggest that you would not notice anything is wrong, closer inspection shows the greater depth of the disease.

This concept intrigued me, the idea of emphasising the surveillance and scrutiny deployed by a person’s perception of illness. There becomes a subsequent loss of privacy and an inevitable lack of dignity that evolves over time. This is something that Nick explores in his work and I would like to place emphasise on this too. I wish to convey this idea by placing my objects in an open environment, inviting everyone to explore and therefore create a platform of intrigue and perhaps constructive criticism. I want the work to explore the depths of disconnectedness that illness projects, I wish to display the connotations of losing the physical presence of the human and exhibiting the body as a mere hint of their existence.


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Martina Mullaney


Turn In (2003)

Martina Mullaney was born in Ireland in 1972, she is a documentary Photographer, and graduated from her Master’s degree in 2004. She worked with many homeless communities across the world.

In 2002 Mullaney was intrigued by the mundane environment of the soiled beds in hostels in Cardiff where the homeless were imprisoned. It metaphorically communicates an image of the perceived conception of alienation and detachment from normal society. Though they are subtle in nature, they are deeply domineering in power. It helps the hierarchical human existence to understand the intense solitude that can subsequently lead to depression, the absence of funds and the lack of empowerment to change the situation. This engages the viewer as they feel a part of the image but are an invisible presence. The narrative is apparent through the focus of highlighting the sweat and urine stains, amongst the creased sheets and the sunken mattress. The impact of discontentment that so many homeless people experience, and feelings that they have when they have few options or hope for a better lifestyle. Mullaney felt empowered to make this series due to the loneliness that many adults face in the society, though many would say it is their preferred choice. It can also become extremely lonely, disconnected and is greatly intensified in the homeless society she embarked upon this concept and explores many examples worldwide.

This work influences me and I wish to show the connotations of loneliness, alienation, isolation, solitude, anxieties and depression that you can feel whilst having cancer. I would like to use the vernacular nature of the work and the same composition of the bed set up, I will use long exposures, in a night-time setup and use the unrecognisable human features to emphasise these factors. I am selecting a bed to be the chosen object and subject in the location as it conveys the messages sufficiently well, I suffered from insomnia and this illustrates this symptom well. I would find a bed in the middle of a location, haunting to view and inspiring an eerie feel, to draw upon the most emphasis, therefore creating the sufficient ambience that is paramount to the storytelling aspect when combining the hybridity features I am choosing to embed in my work.


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Martina Mullaney – Turn In

Francesca Woodman


House (1976)

Francesca Woodman was born in Colorado in 1958, Woodman lived and worked in New York and Italy, following her death at twenty-two, her work was exhibited extensively, her work depicts eighteen rare vintage black and white photographs, a collection once owned by Woodman’s boyfriend. This collection has hundreds of photographs, emphasised and exploited by the minuscule 6×6 CMs medium format. Woodman had a, maverick, unique style and variety of innovative techniques. In some photographs, Woodman merges with the contours through her vigorous manoeuvre theatrics. Woodman’s syntax often creates a depiction difficult to distinguish but creates a despotic feeling between the extremities of figure, self, substructure and world. From the onset, her body was both the subject and object in her work.

Woodman’s photographs demonstrate many influences, that use forms of hybridity and remediates some of them: from symbolism to surrealism that become a product of fashion photography to a radical documentary and maybe even a Baroque painting. In combining both performances, Woodman uses play and self-exposure. Woodman’s thematic placement permeates her photographs which segregate individual body parts immersed with carefully manipulated props, sometimes submerged in vintage clothing, Woodman typically corresponds with sited dilapidated, empty rooms or utilizes sparse antique furniture, dispositional by textured surfaces, traumatised mirrors; this creates disturbing psychological and claustrophobic ambiences.

Woodman uses dynamism through obscuring her subjects, she promptly displays that photographs distort, never conveying unabridged truth about a subject. Woodman’s photographs have a timeless superiority that is ethereal and Woodman is a promoter of avant-garde. Woodman’s photographs are unconventional because they explore issues of gender as she explores the boundaries of the bodily experience and it encapsulates self-displacement. She distorts her physical features making them congruous and this makes representation of the body as a form of constitute of the surroundings. This underlying isolated, ghostly presence alters her material identity and conveys her vulnerability. The rival of intemperate presence and absence of debate thus values the evanescence of her work.

Woodman influences my choice I feel that I should find a similar location Woodman exhaustingly tracked down for photographs, as it will hold the same stark connotations. I would like to recreate heavily poignant photographs achieved with long exposures. This will highlight profoundly metaphoric stories of self, much like Woodman. The idea of segregating individual body parts is something that inspires me to create a similar theme such as obscuring myself into the contours of the photograph, not exposing my physical self but my mental self to the viewer. The depiction of Woodman as unconventional I find incredibly strange because I find it astonishing that there is so much beauty in such melancholic photographs yet it is actually quite similar to Pre-Raphaelite era. I would like to replicate the beauty within melancholy that I sometimes feel. I feel deeply inspired by the uniqueness of Woodman’s creativity. I would also like to embark on avant-garde style by using hybridity and remediation within my work.

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Catherine Yass

Corridors (1994)

Catherine Yass was born in England in 1963 and still works in London today. In 1986, Catherine received her B.A. at the Slade School of Fine Art, from 1988-1990, she studied her Masters in Fine Art at Goldsmiths College. Some of the major commissions that Yass’ work has been featured in vast exhibition sites, worldwide.

Yass, sought after for her idiosyncratic style in her film based photographic work. Catherine Yass is highly experimental with her techniques as she uses solarization, which involves manipulating the subject matter by overlaying the photographic film’s positives and negatives. The process where dark areas can be converted into light and lighter areas are subsequently inverted into dark. The reminiscent visions of Yass’ poignant past with heavily colour-saturated images emanate a coldness (also very similar to X-Ray) that communicates artist’s feelings and voice in a story she wishes to tell the viewer. The evocative qualities, the psychological atmosphere created in her photographs, beautifully systematized through the choice of claustrophobic subject matter: sinister corridors, staircases and empty cells. Yass reveals the skeletal structure of the architecture, the hunting ghost that lurks beneath the subject matter, yet it still feels like a realistic sense of space inside hospitals. Yass likes displaying her photographs in light-boxes when she exhibits, this adds to the luminous feeling, which combines otherworldly and surreal quality to her photographs.

Yass thoroughly inspires me to use a colour scheme, complimentary of both cold and warm tones as they both have separate connotations. I feel this is very significant to Yass’s work but also my own. The use of fire looks magnificent especially as it is been through a solarisation process and therefore the colour is faded. The process enables the human eye to store the colour. I would like to replicate this within some of my work I would like to use fire to represent and incorporate a meaning within my own work. Yass seems to tell a similar story to my own, especially as she has used corridors within a hospital environment, this should be something that I either replicate or use to inspire my photographs to tell my story. Yass inspires me to use film as part of my project; I can achieve the great amount of sharpness but also capture the naturally beautiful grain within the analogue process. I would also like to capture the high-intensity of the saturation that Yass has used as I feel this will create an instant magnificent impact on the viewer. I would perhaps also like to display my work similarly to Yass by using light boxes to illuminate the colour intensity.

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Walter Oltmann


Mother and Child (2013)

Walter Oltmann was born in South Africa in 1960, his focus became directed towards sculpture, he skilfully sculptured his art forms by fabricating woven wire into material objects, which frequently used local craft traditions. He spent a great deal of time researching the use of woven materials and the tradition of his chosen sculpture. Oltmann spends his time wisely as an artist, as his name has become synonymous with this traditionally African art form.

In 2007, he made a series based all around the rapid spread of HIV/AIDS in Southern Africa. The artwork was of a skeletal pregnant mother and her baby; woven with fine wire to bear a resemblance to lacework that suggests permeable skin as it highlights the uncertain wall between an HIV infected mother and her child. The idea was to create intimacy and a delicate natural feel in the intricate detail of the work by using lace in the weaving. The choice of subject matter provides an emotive charge, the subject matter of skulls and a child’s skull this is unlikely to leave the audience without a reaction. He is referencing the natural bond and the cultured history between a mother and child. The skeletons feel very sentimental and give a sense of attachment which is why he felt it necessary to use this subject matter in so doing he was able to recreate an almost X-Ray level of detail on the interior of the human body.

“I manipulate industrial materials in a way that contradicts their prefabricated nature by emphasising hand-made processes.”

I feel heavily influenced by this work due to the techniques of using different materials to create metaphoric, semiotic and diverse narratives behind the work. As the work is very beautiful but also hauntingly intimidating in some harrowing aspects, I feel my work will relate to this vision, I will incorporate the use of powerful trauma within my work to provide a unified narrative to inform and educate the audience discovering all aspects of disease’s symptoms. I very much liked the skeletal body and the use of its form as it already creates a huge impact and provokes emotive reactions

The solitude that this artwork provokes when viewed is something I would rather like to recreate; I believe that a solitary body creates a greater depth in terms of the connected connotations, the relationship of how it relates to somebody psychologically. I feel that this artwork is so poignant and urges me to recreate the chosen aesthetic style but I would like to submerge the style in a bathtub, through a projection to recreate the same level of poignancy. I will exchange the bodies positioning to emphasise the itching/burning but also the drowning or engulfing feeling thus creating the feelings I felt that the disease created in me. I would like to photograph myself from above a bathtub but changing my positioning, this will ultimately enable me to narrate the story through my body image. I shall create watery effects moving over the still image of my body to recreate a bath like simulation, I will place a red overlay over the top to symbolise fire and danger and perhaps a flickering light from below to help recreate fire like simulation.

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Alexey Titarenko


City of Shadows (1991-1994)

Alexey Titarenko is a photojournalim/Cinematic and Photographic Arts photographer born in Russia in 1962, he started photographing in 1971, by 1978 he graduated and finished his Masters degree in 1983.

Postdissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991 inspired his invigorated appoach to make the series which Titarenko relates to the human condition of fellow Russian people, suffering from the collapsed economy. He wanted to capture the sorrow they withstood depicting the hardship of this problematic time. He wanted to draw parallels between the past and the comtempory using strong metaphors enhanced by several minute long exposures. Titarenko found street photography a device for propaganda approved only by censors so he introduced a new camera movement which became the norms of street photography typified in urban landscapes. He was passionate about his camera’s ability to create art.

Whilst being inspired by classical music Titarenko said “I was walking on the street, absorbing what’s happening, passing by a subway station I see a sea – this ocean of desperate people trying to get inside”. The mass of ghosting figrues almost seems poetic but also dramatic in aesthetic, power and vision. I feel that this work is suggestive of a questiable void in humanity. It accentuates the lack of empathy and highlights the self presence amongst others, where we feel disconnected and distant conveying a sense of isolationism. He felt very empowered to use his photographic resources to create this series to document the struggles that he and many others encounterd..

This work inspires me to make a short series to represent a multitude of feelings. I want to capture the deep haze, ghostly in presence. I want my work to foreshadow the deeper depths beneath what I felt psychologically and physically. Much like this photograph, I would also like to use long exposures to pick up all the movement for an extended time, accentuating how the light shifts and changes through the shadows. My short series shall be different, as I will be shooting only at night with an accent light to shift into the undulations of all the dimensions of the blankets, moving both the light and blanket universally. I would also like to shoot this series potentially using film, in order to have the most eerie, mystical detail, as I will potentially lose a significant amount detail due to the transfer of the prints. The rationale is that I will draw the audience in via several avenues. This process of using film will be part of my experimental process but embracing a new approach, which I hope, will be fruitful. The analogue process would be a base point to try out, as I feel heavily influenced by Titarenko, as he uses film in his captures. Titarenko offers a new movement in street photography; he also promotes a story of sorrow. I would like to combine both elements into my work, telling my story and creating new scenery in the creative field of photography, I wish to utilise the vernacular by placing mundane object but displaying them with added meanings, therefore, channelling the use of hybridity.

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Photographer Transforms Crowds into Shadows and Black and White into Color

Martin Newth


8 Hours (2001)

Martin Newth is extremely experimental as a photographer, based in London; he looks at alternative ways of using different photographic methods of enhancing his subjects (mainly using long exposures). He has a storytelling aspect to his work, this helps the audiences to portray and grasp his hidden meaning. In this series he has taken eight hour long exposures in American motels, most of which are of his honeymoon (in 2001). The images are perhaps suggesting the philosophical futures of marriage as a rhetorical interest (or in modern times the stigma that we may feel as the viewer).

His captures display the movement as a haze or series of trails that exist with time-consuming exposures. It is discernible that they were asleep during night whilst being photographed. The viewers may want to know if the artist and his wife was happily married and perhaps fifteen years later ask if they are still believe themselves to be harmonious, or perhaps if the ghostly aesthetic within the photograph is foreshadowing the contrary. Newth used large 10×8 negatives to create the series to ensure the most accurate amount of detail and high contrast where upon was seemingly captured in order to give us a sense of dreamy feelings. This potential notion of the series is suggestive, speaking about his relationship and proposing that it would’ve been their dreams to be happily married and that they’re now incorporated in that dream. His setup was simple; he would just place the camera on the television overnight and then develop them in the bathroom every morning. This process continued throughout his honeymoon, this provided the inspiration that enabled him to create the series. I believe that the movement fascinated Newth during long exposures of the night; he wanted to find the outcome of the aesthetic created, after researching the history of photography, this inspired the quest for new theories to try out, in essence remediating. Newth is still a practitioner working today.

I feel deeply inspired by this work however, I would utilise a more directional narrative, the work I feel would be modified differently therefore, relating it to my own personal experiences with lymphoma as there was countless nights for several months in which I didn’t sleep, insomnia caused by scratching and the need to reduce the desire to itch . I became too overheated at night; I would like to illustrate my frustrating symptoms by using long exposures whilst moving between two blankets, complimentary in colour. One blanket will be red symbolic of fire and danger. It will illustrate the coldness but also the hazard of potential danger. The captures will display movement between the two blankets correlating the amount of movement made during the night corresponding to the message of overheating by ‘throwing the blankets off’. I would also like to empathize what it can do to a person mentally, physically, and emotionally. I would like to have a similar aesthetic to my images, withholding the same movement, thus inspiriting a mystical air, with use of high contrast blacks but with intense colours to enhance the images aesthetic.

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