Sunday, 4 May 2014

A decision

I either have to complete this course or abandon it. The problem continues to be my complete and utter disinterest in documentary though photographing people. I have not taken a photo of any artistic consequence for almost 6 weeks because the absolute focus of the course exercises this far on social documentary and on photographing people is so at odds with what I want to do. It is fair to say that the only documentary practice involving people that has so far piqued my imagination is “mockumentary” – e.g. De Middel’s  Afronauts.

The other thread that interests me is narrative through objects. The museums of the world tell stories through artefacts, Radio 4’s A History of the World in 100 Objects achieved the same through words and sounds, and it does not seem unreasonable to try the same with photographs of artefacts – Chris Jordan’s “Midway: Message from the Gyre” is as powerful a piece of campaigning (social?) documentary as any I’ve seen.

I have allowed myself to become blocked by worrying about how I will live up to the target I set myself with the the result of the previous module – in other words how to please the assessors. I then tie myself in knots because I know that what I produce by doing that will be an empty exercise. I am clearly not going to abandon the course so I have to stop worrying and go with my instinct.

So…Assignment 2 to is going to focus on the abstract concept of “legacy” – and I’m going to interrogate it through things – things associated with the iron and steel industries which used to be at the heart of the west Cumbrian community and are now rapidly on their way to being just a memory.

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