The above are two contact sheets from the last couple of weekends which have been part of the process of planning assignment 2.
My first idea is to look at describing one or more Hampshire towns with an emphasis on their changing ethnicity. Following shoots in Winchester, Aldershot and Basingstoke I have trawled through the photos multiple times looking for something that resonates and helps me find a starting point. This process has culled the edited photos from many to a few less to the sixteen shown here four of those are just alternative crops of the same image.
Nothing is leaping out at me but I see some promise in the ones below which have a sense of continuity about them that might be worth developing. Overall I like the reflections combined with people’s faces and how the combination of the elements tells us something about how cosmopolitan or diverse these little towns have become.
I am starting with Red Girl because I like the lighting. It has a lot of the elements that I am looking for, multi-ethnic food (I’m not even very sure whether is is noodles or Italian), colour and reflections. It is tempting to crop even tighter to remove the dead space of the ceiling but I like her arms so unless i go square it is difficult to see a final image.
Fig. 4 Hairdresser and Agent would have worked better if a live person was in there somewhere but the colours really work well here and the ghostly reflection dominates the scene. I love the multiple layers of reflection so that it is hard to differentiate between the estate agent, the hairdressers and the infrastructure of the street. This might be worth shooting again when the shop is open although it might be quite different if the lights were on.
I have discarded this (fig. 5), come back to it, discarded it again, re-cropped it and now have it on my promising list. I like the gold, green and red and love the women’s face and expression but I can’t decide whether the white car is too strong.
Fig. 6 is another hairdresser, the reflections work well and the curled photos on the wall give it a back-street feel. His expression is great but it was taken on the shady side of the street and ISO 4000 is pushing the quality to the brink. To make the idea work I need a deep DoF so that the interior detail and the reflections are both in focus but I also need good light to allow me to at work at a lower ISO.
I like this for all the same reasons that I like Gurkha Jewellery. It is one of those brilliant cafés that sell a bizarre mix of food. Fish and Chips to Black pea rice and the boy just adds to the mix. The reflections are very strong and I like the fact that I have to take a long look at the picture to decide what goes with what.
The next step will be to try another shoot and try to focus in on finding the right combination of reflections, people and influences from outside of Hampshire. There are plenty more hairdressers, barbers, specialist clothes shops and cafés to look at in Basingstoke and Aldershot so I’ll run with it for a while longer.