My current project for uni is based around residential towers, which is turn is borne of an interest of urban infrastructure and the functional repurposing of old structures. One of my interests is electrical power lines – electricity pylons, telephone masts, that sort of thing.
I recently stumbled across work called The Japan Series by Andreas Gefeller, which consists of images created using a mixture of mainly power lines and plants. Having seen and been impressed by this body of work, I started noticing the power lines above Nottingham’s tram system more and more. One lunchtime in between a lecture and a seminar I decided to take some photographs out of the window of Subway, following the tram power lines.
I had a tutorial the following Monday – a week ago today – and these images happened to be in the same folder in Lightroom as the photographs I wanted to show my tutor. The images I actually wanted to show him were from a series of photographs that looked like this:
However, he seemed far more preoccupied with the image at the top of this post. He said he found it far more interesting because it had more depth to it and was more complex. I thought this was an interesting way to look at photographs – the photos that I intend to actually use for my project (i.e. neither of the above, but the subject matter is closer to the latter image) will indeed be fairly layered by comparison.
One of the things I struggle to grasp when creating or writing about images is seeing past the subject matter and instead considering things like internal composition or underlying themes. I’m starting to wonder how far I can push my research notes in terms of influences of style rather than photographers or artists who are creating thematically similar works. There has to be limits of how far removed from the work I am looking to make the works I research are… perhaps it’s just a matter of pushing until I find them.