The reworking of Assignment 1
Based on the feedback and the tutor session with Russell, I have extended the assignment through experimentation. I took the idea of making Diptychs using 8 of the images and producing 4 sets. the first step was to sort and select the images to use, I printed all 12 of the images on 6×4 photo cards so that I could move them around on the desk and visualise the pairings.
I found three easy pairings and struggled a little with the fourth, I stuck with the pairing that Russell and I discussed as it was the most obvious of the set I changed the cropping and flipped and rotated each image so many times I am not sure how close the final cut came to the example, however, this was the final diptych for the BT exchange and the warehouse:
I was impressed with the level of study Russell had given to the original images, he had zoomed in to look in detail and worked out that I owned a black truck, which is often in the images, in homage to this I left it in my crop of the BT building and if you zoom in close you can even see me flying the drone next to it. In this image, I liked Russell’s idea of using the boundary lines at the top and having them intersect as diagonals in the middle at the top. I do think that if I wanted to move further in this project it would be good to use the drone to take images of a series of tall buildings looking straight down like the one of the BT exchange. The biggest issue for this is securing a TOLS (take off and landing site) and having the permission needed to fly these missions.
The next pairing that took me was to pair Farnham Castle with a water treatment silo:
I liked the similarity of the two images even though they are remarkably different structures they share similar compositional characteristics. I rotated and flipped them both until I found the composition to be most pleasing and this was where I ended up. It took some time and the judicious use of guidelines to match the two images and to crop and resize them so that the two circles were the same size and lined up with each other, I was taken by the fact that this apes the original water treatment picture which also featured two circles. I was quite attached to the original image and I am pleased how well the merged in the diptych to create the final image.
The next pair is a rather obvious pairing of two street scenes taken from above a housing estate. The two images both gave me some of the highest feelings of vertigo and I always felt worked well in the original series. They play to the idea I had that in order to make the viewer feel vertigo not only did the height and angle have to be right but there needed to be something going on in the image to draw the viewer in. This is where I think we manage to go from straight vertigo to the sublime as the sublime in Burkes definition is the boundary between pain and pleasure and in this case interesting or beautiful and off balancing enough to make you grab the armrests of your chair. the pairing turned out like this:
Where I think this works particularly well is in the rotation of the images to make the eye feel as unbalanced as possible, the image on the left was rotated by 90 degrees so that it fools the eye into thinking it is falling over, the image on the right is rotated so that the tilt is in a different plane making the discord between the two more highly amplified. Overall I am really pleased with this pairing as it certainly demonstrates my theory, especially when viewed at a large size.
The last one was something of a struggle to visualise how two of the remaining images could be paired to emphasise the feeling of vertigo but also to resonate with each other in a way that the other three did for me. This was my final selection and probably took as long as the other three put together, much of the time being spent on trying to identify similar characteristics and rotating and flipping and cropping the images to find a matched balance:
I don’t feel this is as strong as the others but was the best pairing I felt I could achieve without using extra images, If I wanted to make this set stronger and push the final project further I might go out with the drone to specifically hunt down vertigo images that work together compositionally. However, given the brief to experiment with the 12 images from the initial submission this was not a bad compromise. In some ways, I like these tow images better in their initial form.
<EDIT> Having discussed these new Diptychs with Russell, I have taken off the background which was only there because of a misunderstanding and re worked the Sewarage version, I was not happy with the above cut and it was the first thing Russell comented on too, since almnost good enough is not good enough I have done some rework based on a bit of sage advice given to me years agon on a course about creating a portfolio where no image should feel worse than the others. Russell comented that the Sewerage images reminded him of dominos, I liked this and went with that theme, I confess I swapped out the images for more suitable alternatives from the shoot and arrived at this:
This does leave the door open to create other images and take this much further, I think if this was my level 3 project I would do that and maybe have sets of four diptychs depicting different ideas, one I have already suggested was the idea of taking images looking down tall office buildings. This idea makes me think of the work of Mr Steel a youtube FPV drone pilot who makes quite controversial videos bombing all sorts of buildings and structures with an FPV drone (I must point out by bombing I mean flying up down and around the structure), his videos are hard to watch as they are really fast and disorientating but there are moments in those films that show a view exactly like the ones I am imagining. If you want to check out Mr Steel his Youtube channel is here https://www.youtube.com/user/MrSteeledavis
I am however pleased with the extended version of this project and feel I learned a lot by pushing my practice further than the original images as submitted. If this is a taste of how the rest of this module will go I think I am in for a treat.
Thank you, Russell, it has been very profitable to engage with you and develop my work and practice further.