During this week I have been tasked with creating an image or series of images and seeking out in an urban/suburban environment the colours yellow and black, which are the colours most people associate with bees, and produce an image/s without any actual bees seen, that can represent the potential extinction of the species. I have found this project rather enjoyable yet challenging. The pre photography process was very different to how I would usually work. I would usually read a lot of news articles and scientific readings/ journals before creating a photographic brief. But for this project that element of research wasn’t needed as the brief was already given. I did however read a few novels Max brooks World War Z and Stephen Kings The stand, I took a particular interest in how they described post-apocalyptic landscape. “That wasn't any act of God. That was an act of pure human fuckery.”
― Stephen King, The Stand “There's precious little reform in the human race.” ― Stephen King, The Stand, these two quotes stood out for me the most in the Stephen King book. As they are directly attacking the human race for its own stupidity, something that has a link with what I am creating. It’s the human race that is bringing destruction to the bee species and ultimately to our planet. We have all the resources and intellect to do something about it, yet due to our own reluctant nature to except change were doing very little. A quote from Max Brooks that influenced this body of work was “Lies are neither bad nor good. Like a fire they can either keep you warm or burn you to death, depending on how they're used.”
― Max Brooks, World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War, I have explored the idea of us as a race telling lies or a diluted version of the truth and what this could ultimately result in. That is the destruction of our planet. I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised by how much I liked this new way of creating images. Working to a dictated brief and moulding it into my own project was an interesting change. I think I have created images that have stayed true to myself and my artist preferences but also I feel I have stayed true to the brief. Saying this I do think that due to the fact I focused on plant life within these environments the urban aspect of the images is only there when used with description. I did take influence for the environment around me, the branches creeping over the whole frame, like looking through one of the many industrialised fences surrounding me when the images were taken. The use of different focus points to represent the block between me and the environment I was documenting. Taking this project further I would look more into the use of high contrast imagery and maybe introducing some of the more urban details of the environment such as smoke from factories to symbolise the apocalyptic effect I am wanting to achieve. This wasn’t possible at the time of taking this series of images due to the chimneys’ not being on.
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I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!