Fine tuning techniques. Focusing very much on masking, both literal and technical. Falling in love with the Holga.
an anxiety (part 1)
an anxiety (part 2)
a reunion of love and lust
portrait, enigmatic girl
this love will be the death of us (part 1)
this love will be the death of us (part 2)
this love will be the death of us (part 3)
this love will be the death of us (part 4)
whore of babylon
this is not
god so loved the world
an extension of the soul (part 1)
an extension of the soul (part 2)
christmas tree clusters
elements of geometry
our god jupiter
pillars of creation
a self portrait
A particularly rough patch of my college years that forced me to step back and reevaluate what I wanted out of my life.
I split with my High School girlfriend, kicked a lot of friends out of my life, and generally just pissed everybody off.
This is my coming to terms with it all.
a brief explanation
An emulation of modern "spirit photography".
I primarily shoot with a Holga - a plastic camera with a plastic lens - and I feel this low-key, low quality approach helps me deal with a topic in a way that satisfies me instead of getting bogged down too much on technical details. Once shot, I abuse my negatives in a variety of ways: scratching, burning, shredding and taping back together. Coupled with the soft focus and slight vignetting of the Holga, my images have an ethereal, fragmented quality. Like trying to remember a dream, you find that there are no clear details; only flashes of images and emotions just out of reach.
And what better thing to come to terms with than death? I've basically spent my entire life politely ignoring that it happens, so I set out to photograph my friends, family, and loved ones in a violent and upsetting manner. In this way, I was the director of their death and as such had control over its timing. In a way this was strangely comforting. No surprises. If I said die, they played dead. When I put the camera down, they got back up.
These pieces invoke in me a sort of morbid curiosity. I want to look away but I find myself transfixed yet disgusted, and asking questions: Is this what death looks like? Are these people still themselves somehow? Is there a way to avoid the wound in your soul inflicted by a loved one ceasing to exist?
I have decided that part of the beauty of life is that it ends someday.
I'm not sure that I like that answer.
Originally presented as diptychs with a mocked up death certificate covering the gory photo. Viewers were able to lift the certificate and view the photo if their curiosity was still not sated after reading a detailed cause of death.
: a form of visual agnosia characterized by an inability to recognize faces
Originally presented as 4" x 6" images in a small photo album labeled "Family".
Agnosia is the inability to process sensory information. Prosopagnosia specifically is the inability to recognize faces; sometimes the sufferer of this illness can even fail to recognize themselves.
It is in this way that I wanted to tackle the issue of identity. So much of how we identify ourselves is how we look or how we feel we are presented to society. In today's digital world a face is becoming increasingly rarer in social interactions. Most of our day to day lives are spent remotely through the internet, emailing, or texting. In a world where our identities are so malleable, it can be difficult to pin down exactly who we feel like we are, or understand how others see us. A person wears many masks through life. In this way, I feel we all have difficulty recognizing faces on some level.
By removing the face from these images, my purpose is twofold: to strip these people of their perceived identity, and to force the viewer to attempt to identify with them in the way that someone with prosopagnosia might. When we carry so much information and history in our faces, and we lose the ability to communicate using them, what then do we become? Without this identity, how else might we be identified?
"Field work", if you will.
Taken at a variety of places over a number of years.
Sometimes moments happen and you happen to have a camera in your hands.
These are those moments.
Because sometimes people want pictures taken of them when they aren't covered in fake blood.