Tuesday, February 23, 2010

19th Century Alternative Processes

The Anthotype Print

The Anthotype print is more or less made from fruit and alcohol. It is one of the most simple alternative processes. All you must do is grind up a bunch of fruit or flower petals and then you add a "splash" of denatured alcohol to the pulp and mix until it appears soupy. you then pour the solution into a double layer of cheesecloth and squeeze all the pulp juice into a container. You then coat your paper with the fluid and let it dry. You expose these for one to three weeks and look for the pigment to fade to appropriate contrast; when the highlights bleed to white. What is unique about this process and important to remember is that because of the sun, a positive negative makes a positive image and a negative negative makes a negative image. Colors vary upon what fruit or flowers you mix.

Stephane Dabrowski-Anthotype 2

Carol Golemboski-Raspberry Ferris Wheel

The Palladium Print

The Palladium print starts with a mixture of ferric oxalate, potassium chlorate and palladium (II) chloride/sodium chloropallidite. these solutions are mixed and applied to a paper and then let to dry in cool-air. During exposure the print is deemed ready when its "whisper image" appears. After exposure the paper is then washed in ammonium citrate or potassium oxalate, which reduces the image to its metallic palladium. The developed print is put in an acid bath known as EDTA and then washed for permanence. The process results in increased depth and detail in an image and is considered a warm tone print.

Jose Miguel Ferreira-Naturalia 06

Jose Miguel Ferreira-Norte 02

The Gum Bichromate Print

The gum print is made from a mix of potassium and bichromate salt which is added to a colloid that can come from gum arabic, glue or gelatin. This liquid is applied to a paper that is dried and then printed on with a contact negative. the print is then developed in water exactly like cyanotypes. A pigment can be added to the original solution to cause the final print to be various colors, but otherwise the gum process turns out as a tan image. The gum process produces a painterly look to images giving the impression of the "artists hand."

Scott McMahon-Set for the Rise

George Omorean-Silhouette

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Persona Project

Creating Persona

For this project I decided to work with the idea of both an internal and external persona. I thought about the difference between the notions we have about our own personas and the way we are perceived by others. In order to explore those differences in myself I had my friends take my picture in hopes that it would present a more honest way in which I appear to the world. In each photo I am being dressed and posed by a friend so as to appear as a kind of epitomized version of myself. The only variables that I had control over were the background and the position of the camera, otherwise they completely directed the photograph. Each person took three to four different pictures and then I chose one from each batch so as to make the filter my persona through another lens. Instead of having my friends take full control over their portrayals of myself I also let my notions about my persona help construct the project thus leading to an image made by two perceptions rather then one. I put the project on a grid because I wanted it appear as a contained piece. Almost as if the physical object of the project were a body and the pictures, windows into the persona. I also had each friend autograph his or her final picture because I wanted the viewer to question the nature of the project rather then just take it for self-portraiture. Each signature seems to separate the work into the contribution of various artists even though the images have a clear uniformity to them.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Mapping Project

Mapping: Night Flow

For this project I first decided to define mapping for myself as the exploration and recording of something unseen or unnoticed. Keeping this in mind, I chose to map the flow of people on Oberlin campus at night. Although we can conceptualize the idea of movement we cannot actually capture it in one still frame, except with a camera. I decided to take several long exposures of various places on Oberlin campus that people commonly walked through. I viewed the campus as a kind of architectural space that consisted of many pathways that could be revealed and thus recorded. This thought produced the term flow in that when describing the “flow” of a building we are talking about the way people navigate the rooms. I organized my photographs as a journey from north to south campus. The narrative could be thought of as a journey to fourth meal from my room in Noah, therefore creating another mapped pathway. The fact that maps serve a purpose also informs this project. They are created so that others may follow them with an idea of where they are going and what they will see while going there. I not only wanted to map a pathway, but also reveal what could be seen as you follow it.

Emulation project

Emulation Project: Working With Wall

For my emulation project I chose to study the photographs of fine arts photographer Jeff Wall and attempt to recreate some of the aesthetics and concepts he communicates in his work. Wall’s pictures range from geometric compositions, as seen in Sunken Area and Blind Window, to elaborately composed scenes that appear more like a movie set. The Vampire’s Picnic depicts several Vampires feasting on dead humans. This image is surreal and highly structured, yet appropriate to Wall’s work due to its play with directorial photography. Wall was one of the first photographers to work with directorial photography, he thought that photographs, paintings and movies could be viewed in a more synonymous way through his work because of the time he would spend setting up a single image. Wall’s photographs are printed on huge paper and backlit to make theme appear as advertisements do. Although I could not achieve such an elaborate presentation I tried to work with the content of the images rather then their staging to convey my emulation of Wall.
I was interested in working as a directorial photographer for this project and chose Wall as my inspiration because his simpler compositions struck me as incredibly communicative yet ambiguous. In Passerby a man is looking behind him at a figure running in the opposite direction as he walks down the street. We come to understand their relationship as strangers and their identity as two people on a street sidewalk late at night, but we are forced to ask why this figure in the background is running and if the man in the foreground is just looking because of intrigue or because he knows the figure. In my pictures I am attempting to convey the same kind of clarity yet ambiguity. Wall recreated many things he saw on the street in more controlled environments such as Shadows and Tattoo’s and Mimic, and so for my project I drew on memories I have about being a student at Oberlin and worked to both communicate aspects of those memories while leaving others up for question.