Monday, 8 October 2012

A Sense of Ending

From time to time, we as photographers stumble across people less fortunate than ourselves, whether it be when photographing in war torn places of conflict or here in the streets, of where you live. While am out I come across many a homeless person, whilst photographing the streets.

One day I came whilst walking past another photographer capturing some happy couples wedding day, I spotted a man who could be younger than myself. I have seen the man before near St Luke's (bombed out church) Liverpool.

I have enjoyed shooting the streets, its great to photograph and you can harness your technique when panning or zooming into your subject. Recently in our lectures we have focused on certain photographers, one who has certainly moved me is the work of the Russian photographer, Aleksander Rodchenko; his work is simply way ahead of it's time.

I will try to put that into context, when viewing the work of our European cousins Bresson, Brassai, Doisneau we instinctly know they photographed their subjects mainly on the streets of Paris, France. The work was fairly composed in the case of Bresson, but you have to wander in awe at Rodchenko and his stunning linear composition.

He was clearly a master of his craft, he emerged after the Russian Revolution and his work covered many mediums artist, sculpture, graphic designer and photographer. Rodchenko had encapsulated the art movement Constructivism into his photography, he would manipulate the perspective in such a way of 'catching out' or holding the viewers attention, you would be drawn to the work and be totally moved by its form.

I certainly was on first gazing this particular image, in a way these 'angels' can never be touched because they are caged, also hinting that these women are also birds, yet we are the ones who are caged because we cannot engage with the subject matter in a physical sense.

Very inspiring work, they're is also a major minor aspect to the image and a sense of freedom. In the upper left corner the linear lines make way for a space, like a skylight window and the enticing subjects are completely juxtaposed against the free space. Intriguing work, but it really works. These monochrome shots, truly are remarkable, early phototgraphers did not have colour to distract the viewer, instead monochrome has certainly been mastered in such a significant way as to educate and inspire emotion in people, as to reproduce said influence in works today.

The work of Rodchenko has captivated many artists over the years, one in particular was his wife and artist Varvara Fyodorovna Stepanova. She came from peasant origins but was fortunate enough to get an education at Kazan School of Art, Odessa. Which brings me to my point of a post today, our origins and what shapes us?

This is a shot of a homeless man, I took a little while ago. It was a sunny afternoon the suns rays shining down on his legs, he was warming himself up for the night. his colleague was sat around the corner, but looking at this you could assume he was either whacked out on some drug or another form of abuse alcohol.
I look at this and always say to myself, what a civilised society we live in, we have not evolved to help our fellow human, we would rather them be on the street or worse dead than to simply cancel debt and put a hand to help those in need. I can't help but think, this was in a sense an ending...