Assignment 4: Real or Fake? – Planning

Following on from the black and white photography of the previous assignment my interest and focus continued with this assignment, which was also very interesting to me. When done well photo manipulation is a brilliant tool and many photographers and artists use it to great effect in a more focused use on the manipulation itself rather than the photograph, namely Erik Johannson, a Swedish born artist living in Germany, who’s work can be seen here http://www.erikjohanssonphoto.com.

The brief of this assignment is to produce an image that illustrates an imaginary book or magazine cover. After much thought about potential books along the lines of ones I am aware of to take inspiration from, we are also able to use existing literature or magazine publications and rework a cover for them with our own ideas. Taking interest in classics like ‘Jane Eyre’ and also a personal favourite book of mine ‘It’s Kind of A Funny Story’ I looked out how I could introduce the ideas of potential reworks. I found it near on impossible to consider and be anywhere near confident in a re-imagination of a Jane Austin cover, the importance and acclaim such a classic has it would be very difficult to do it justice sticking to the parameters of the use of image manipulation. I also found that using my second idea of ‘It’s Kind of A Funny Story’ difficult to achieve, I had a single idea of using image manipulation to impose a mind map, which is a strong element within the book and film onto a portrait of a teenage boy thus drawing two elements of the book. I also had a final idea of using my grandfathers work in progress, of a collection of his memoirs in an autobiographical book called ‘A Long Life in Hampshire’. I then had the overall ideas of what I wanted to produce in regards to a back and front cover and wanted to use an element from either in the spine to improve continuity.

I was recommended to look at the work of Andreas Gurksy in research for this assignment and plan to do so in more depth, however in a very brief look I was interested to see that he works with medium format camera and then scans them into the computer to manipulate them to not alter reality but to heighten existing elements of the world and more specifically when he has photographed. This is a mindset I look at when photographing and processing, and only is specific circumstances, as in this assignment that the image manipulation takes a more central role in the final product.

I plan on using a studio set up with a clean white background and a very regimented lighting set up that will have to remain consistent throughout the shoot.

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