Self Portrait I 

 "Photography offers a means to step outside a situation and gain additional perspectives that may otherwise be difficult to achieve. This makes it a perfect tool to aid reflection and engage in the reflective practices required for professional development"-Claire Craig

The image above was created by using the burst mode on my computer.  It can also be altered into a time release, which I experimented and used on additional images. The final chosen image is actually one of about 100 stills. The other images (not shown), have varying facial expressions, body movements and camera angles. I was really into the physical side of making this particular group of images. I was stretching twisting and moving around. My goal was to get closer to the image behind me.   

The main reason I selected the image above, was my facial expressions and the emotions captured. It best expressed my desire to be one with the photographic poster behind me. When I look at the direction of my head pressing into the poster, I can actually feel a physical sensation.

I decided that by cropping my portrait, it may create the illusion of being there in photographic poster. I wondered whether it could almost look real. The act of cropping gives me the sensation of being in the reality of the poster as apposed to the physical world. I like the idea of this being an illusion, a photograph within a photograph. 

When I started the time release, I remember wanting to be absorbed into the image. In the portrait session I experienced a physical need to travel into the poster. In my chosen self portrait,  I am pressing my head against the wall. The actual physical aspect of the photograph becomes an escape, showing the power of the photograph as a realistic illusionary space.

The image above is a the full photograph featured behind me. It is something I look at daily. It is in the middle of my living room wall and I look directly at it from my sofa. This poster contains memories of my day to day life and when I bought it in the Lake District, three years ago. It is of a view where I had gone on an adventure weekend, with collegues from work. There is some sentiment I have towards the physical poster. Interestingly, I don’t remember seeing that exact view when I visited the real location. Really this photographic poster is my fantasy mental escape.I look to this image, when I  need to escape and  basically transport myself out of what I am feeling. 

The image above was created in a separate session using a projector. I felt it best ilustrated my desire to be merged with the photographic image. The projector exposes the image on top of my face, so I can be connected to the image. I felt like actually becoming the physical photograph, perhaps even a sculptural photo.

The appeal of being transported to another time and space through photography has existed since I started understanding the photo. This was usually experienced through a family album,  magazines and books. I was able to recall events and through the images I saw. Looking at photographs can move me emotionally. I believe it explains why I love looking and cutting out images from travel brochures, magazines and internet sources. The power of the image to transport, engage and represent a reality that exists or existed is of great value to me and my practice.





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