For our first project within the portfolio brief we have been set the task of taking photos of naturally occurring shapes which resemble letters from the alphabet. The brief stated that we should consider working to a visual theme, I thought this would be best as it would hopefully create a continuity within my photos. Working in pairs me and Jack decided to focus our theme around the idea of construction. With three or four new structures being built-in the heart of Bournemouth, we hoped construction would give us ample of opportunities to capture the full twenty-six letters. Little did we know how letters like ‘G’ and ‘P’ would prove to be so hard to find.
The brief stated that we should look at some historical research for inspiration. One site that proved to be very useful was http://www.alphabetphotography.co.uk/. The site features a search bar where words will be created from natural objects, for example in this image the word being ‘Bournemouth’. This site gave me great inspiration when going into Bournemouth as I knew the possibilities were endless.
The first image I created was a poster of the whole alphabet. One aspect that I am very satisfied with is that we were able to capture the entire alphabet. In doing so though, we did have to slightly stray away from our original theme of construction. Letters such ‘M’ and ‘W’ simply just couldn’t be sourced while located around construction sites. However I do feel our minor failures were overshadowed by big success. Good examples of this can be seen in letters such as ‘D’, ‘H’, ‘N’, ‘O’, ‘T’ and my personnel favourite ‘Y’. All of these letters have clear direct links to our theme. Construction further helped us when looking for letters with more straight lines. Scaffolding for example proved very helpful when trying to find ‘K’ and ‘N’.
In my next piece I decided to focused around the concept of arranging the letters to create a word, in this case to form my name. At first I thought this concept would create a unique and abstract look at forming words. In reality though I feel it looks plain, simple and lacks any quality. To improve this piece I tried to integrate my name into some form of media, social media being one. An interesting idea I explored was using this piece and having it as my name on my Facebook profile page. This idea would massively improve the depth, purpose and further increase how abstract the piece is.
For my third design I decided to do some editing in Iphoto. The beauty of editing is that you can experiment with so many tools and effects. One of my first ideas was to change the photos to black and white, doing so created a nice retro feel but also meant they lacked continuity. It was only until I adjusted things like saturation, contrast and definition that the collage was able to gain continuity. The best example of this can be seen in the letter ‘W’. When changing the contrast it gave an immediate effect of making the lights standout from the bush.
One part of the brief that intrigued me was that of having to call upon our photographs eye. I feel I have best demonstrated this in the image below. One aspect that I feel dominates this image is lines. The lines in the steps, the letter ‘F’ and also the door in the background all combine to leading the viewer’s eye to top right hand corner of the image. The objects in the image further create a hard and strong texture. The way this is done is through the steel in the railing, the concrete in the steps and the bricks. With all this, the image comes across as very structurally sound.
Having now completed this project I feel it has given me a great insight into how a photographer can see the little things in a big picture. It’s funny how I find myself out and about and see objects and think, that could have been a better ‘R’ or ‘P’, but that’s just a classic of photography and being in the right place at the right time. Although me and Jack were very enthusiastic with the theme, I do feel it constricted use slightly. It would have been great fun to have no boundaries, therefore being to use all object in sight.
Overall I feel me and Jack did a great job while sticking to brief.I hope to further work on this task in future, possibly linking it with another digital media type such as animation.
WISE, M.,2007. Alphabet Photography UK [online]. Available from:
http://www.alphabetphotography.co.uk/ [October 5 2014]