Photographing Objects

A key aspect of my project is to photograph objects that the lecturer sees pivotal to doing well in the course and getting a job. The project could just be the objects, but the portraits offer a personal touch, they engage the audience with a professional and their opinions. The portrait gives context and identity to the objects. It shows the people in the profession, their fashion, their character and their environment. It gives a student an example of someone who has applied themselves and succeeded, and I hope it would motivate people, or at least show the humanity of success, instead of the arrogance.

Considering this, the object needs to compliment the portrait. Because I am intruding on the lecturers environment, I should be intruding on the objects environment as well. These objects are important for people to utilise, so they have to be given a space that empowers them and shows their relevance.

Originally I wanted to photograph objects and create a structure that mimics the form of the person in the portrait, in the style of Lorenzo Vitturi. But I think that creating a structure out of the images distracts from the message and doesn’t really empower them. Instead I have decided to photograph them like a portrait in the studio to give them more importance. I spent a lot of time getting the lighting the way I wanted it. Once I got it right I tried different forms for the objects, placed them in different ways. But I didn’t like the combination of the objects together. The objects I was photographing were said by Alan East, he said a newspaper, textbook, computer and a phone. They didn’t work well layered on top of each other.

I finally decided to photograph them individually and merge them together on photoshop. By photographing them individually it gives them more power. The lighting makes them stand out and gives them more relevance to the viewer.


Even though I liked these photographs, it doesn’t empower them effectively. It photographs them in a commercial style that makes the viewer think they are buying into a service, instead of informing them about the practicalities of what one can do with the object.

I’ve been heavily inspired by the work of Laura Letinsky. Her photographs empower decaying objects in space where they lit well on a nice backdrop. She places the food on tables with cutlery set out, which provides a context for when they would have been relevant to someone. I’d like to take Laura’s work and apply it to my study. I want to empower them in an environment whether they would be used so that they are photographed in a more interesting setting, that inspire students to use them in that way. This will add more art to the project and make it more interesting for the viewer.


Regardless of this, I still like the studio photographs as a simple but empowering representation of the objects, that offers narrative alongside the portrait.


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