In The Style Of…

Following on from the presentation by Simon and Melanie on how to critique a photograph this evening members brought in a photograph they had taken in the style of another photographer.

Nicholas chose Vivian Maier whose street photography often incorporates a reflection of her own self. The images are quirky yet demonstrate both an ability to capture the world in which she moves and the skill to place herself discreetly in this world.

The evening proved a great success with some fabulous photos being shared. We had great fun trying to work out whose photographic style was being imitated and listening to the explanations as to why and how the photos were chosen and then imitated. Many members went out of their way to take a photo they may never have otherwise tried or thought they could take. It just shows what you can do when you put in the effort to make a photograph.

Well done to all. A gallery of the members photos and those being imitated appears below.

Geoff’s image shows a section of the Ilen River as it appears today and the same section, on the contained image, that Geoff took many years earlier. Similarly, Nick Brandt has super-imposed a photo of a bull elephant taken as it strode across the savannah, parts of which have now become strewn with rubbish. Both images reflect the changes that time has riven on the environment.

John, “I have a passing interest in the wet plate process as I believe it produces softer more even tones especially in deep shadows where it brings out details and subtle highlights. In some ways similar to a painter who paints what the eye sees. In this image of the house I have tried to reproduce this working on shadows and highlights in Photoshop to bring out the detail and texture of the foliage in the foreground. This was in deep shadow in the original image.” As you can see from the two images, the detail and tones in the shadows are exceptional, John’s created using 21st century technology, Ben Nixon’s a 19th century process!

Patricia also chose to imitate an old photographic process, that of the Calotype. Invented by William Henry Fox Talbot, this negative-positive process was the precursor to the photographic process that continued through the 19th and 20th centuries in one form or another. Patricia recreated the negative image on the left by ‘inverting’ the photo she captured digitally.

Sarah turned to Ansel Adams for her inspiration and skilfully imitated his image of a road disappearing into the distance. Adams, famous for his carefully exposed black and white landscape photography, influenced Sarah’s decision to convert her image in a similarly dark and moody manner.

Noreen picked a photographer that most if not all members were unfamiliar with, Kenneth Josephson, an American photographer born in 1932 who has exhibited photographs across the USA and Europe. Here, Noreen has found a set of tyre marks and reproduced a similarly dynamic image. Thanks Noreen for introducing us to such an interesting photographer.

Joe D, like Sarah, has found inspiration in Ansel Adams and his photo of the Teton Mountains and Snake River. Joe’s photo clearly demonstrates his keen eye, skilfully replicating not only the mountainous background but a foreground incorporating a ‘line of beauty’! Fortunately for Joe, or not, he did not have to travel to the Teton Mountains to capture his image but only as far as the rear of the Lake Hotel, Killarney with Lough Leane’s snow capped Macgillycuddy Reeks in the background. Fabulous Joe.

Elmarie found a remarkably similar tree to that of Ansel Adams, the photographer she also chose to emulate. Both have captured the majesty of the tree by filling the frame with its beauty. Excellent, Elmarie.

Although not at the meeting, Joy has sent on her photograph, a candidly taken image outside a bakers in St Cyprien, a town located in the south of France close to the Spanish border. Joy has successfully captured the interaction between a group friends as they shop in the local street market. Joy’s influence is the humanist photographer, Cartier Bresson, best know for his decisive moment image. In the photo above, Bresson has captured a fleeting moment in post-Stalinist Russia as a pair of soldiers eye-up two women who appear oblivious to the attention. A different form of interaction but both photos tell the story with clarity. Terrific.

Kathleen meanwhile has created her family portrait using the famous photo, Migrant Mother by Dorothea Lange as her source of inspiration. Both capture the mother in pensive mood, cradling their infant child in their arms. Dorothea Lange’s photo was taken as part of an assignment to photograph migrant farm workers around California for the Resettlement Administration, which would later become the Farm Security Administration. Kathleen’s photo was taken in much happier times but is equally emotive.