In this project I was experimenting with the prop- red rope. My series focuses on 5 different people using the rope and the rope symbolises the invisible force that drives the different desires of each person. I have taken the images in different settings to create different moods and add different characters to my models. It was quite a challenge to shoot outdoors as the light conditions impacted on exposures, colour temperatures, and details as leaves and branches.
Hanging on a passion (P3,P5)
In this photo the rope represents the crippling hard work , determination and often pain that is required while training for the world of dance. The determination willl push the dancer to the limits to achieve their dream but that same determination can strangle you from the inside. The way the rope wraps around the dancers body shows the unforgiving restrictions in their life but the way the dancer is clinging onto the rope shows they actually depend on these restrictions to bring the inner strength that will help them achieve their goals. In effect the same invisible force that causes so much pain physically and mentaly while training can ironically cause so much pleasure when you are a cut abowe the rest. I chose the red colour as it mirrors the strength needed to engage these invisible forces. The red is also symbolic of the passion and love required go after your dreams but also of the danger that can come as a result of such determination. The reflection represents the inner battle between your heart and your head. Often the things we love can do us more harm then good but if we follow our heart we stay true to ourselves and our passion so ultimately it is worth the sacrifice.
I used low angle to create symmetry to double the effect of the rope to make the rope prominent feature of the image and also so the viewer is on the same level as the dancer so they can feel the expressed emotion. The mirror line shows the split emotions that the dancer would feel. I used the line of the mirror and the barre to strenghten my photographic composition to engage the viewers eye and make the image more powerful. There was a natural light coming from the back of the camera which I used to highlight my use of the colour as the light was catching the rope adding to the prominance of this feature. I also specified that models wear black to further accentuate the strong colour of the rope. (camera settings between f2.8- 3.5, 14mm- 20mm, 1/50s- 1/200s, ISO 1250)
“Work until your bank balance looks like a phone number.” (P3,P5)
In this image the rope represents the inner strenght amd determination that is required in the cut throat world of business. Once you find that strenght it can become an addiction which takes over your life because more you make, the more you want to make. It becomes increasingly difficult to stick to the office hours as greatness is rarely achieved from working 9-5. The thrill of reaching new level in the business or breaking the deal can not be achieved without hard work, determination, and going the extra mile. We often only see the glamorous side of the success with pictures of big houses and fancy cars. The clatter on the work desk in my image parallels the stress and chaos that can be felt during the process of making your bank balance look like a phone number.
In this image I used high angle shot to create a feeling of vulnerability in my subject and allowing the viewer to sneak peak into a private world where everything is not as glamorous as it seems on the outside. The clutter in my image creates a realistic mood and adds the dimension and engages the eye. The lighting comes from above as I wanted to show that all the elements of the photo were prominent. (M- f2.8, 1/100s, ISO 1250, 24mm)
Force of nature (P3,P5)
Here the rope represents the need that mother feels to protect the child from anything this world may have in store. With this protection the mother needs to find her natural inner strength that she can do anything for her child. The length the mother will go through can not be measured. She can fight nature and take on the world. Creating life is the most natural thing we can do which is why I decided to set the picture in a natural open space where there are no barriers to what this mother and the child could achieve. But the rope shows we are all tight to nature in some way. It can hold us back or it can help us grow. The choice is in the hands of next generation.
In this image I used very low angle to make the mother and the world look bigger, stronger, and more powerful. Using the rule of third to compose my visual image I wanted to create the effect of a painting- like composition. (M- f2.8, 1/4000s, ISO 1250, 22- 24mm)
Climb high aim higher (P3,P5)
The rope represents the force driving us to achieve more for ourselves. It is helping us climb higher then we could imagine as well as giving us something to hold on to. For many people the gym is that something to hold on to. It is a constant presence in our life that will always be there for us. But sometimes we are so clouded by the feeling of the belonging, that we are blinded and not able to see how we could achieve the same if not more just by using nature. We are surrounded by beautiful parks and outdoor spaces and yet we drive to the gym to run on the treadmill. The irony is that the treadmill in fact gets us nowhere.
In this image I used very high angle to connect the viewer with my subject as they would will her to climb higher and connect with the feeling of determination. I lit the subject from above using a torch to make her stand out from the darker background to make her and the rope the central focus of the composition. (M- f3.5, 1/13sec, ISO 250, 18-24 mm)
Stepping stones of life (P3,P5)
The stepping stones represents challenges and defying stages of our life and how we help each other to get there. If we have a relationship based on trust and understanding then we will always help the other person reach their stepping stone. Even if it means we have to wait on a stepping stone as well. I chose to take the photo through the branches of the trees to give the viewer the sense of looking through in to the situation and also into someone’s life. The rope symbolises the force that can hold us together and also give us the loyalty that drives us to help the person we love to help overcome anything they face. The weather created the mood of the image which parallels to the fact that life is not always easy and the sun doesn’t always shine but if we have the right person by our side we can get through even darkest of times.
In this image I used framing technique to keep the viewers focus on visual elements in the frame. This also allows the viewers eye to be drawn to the story and also the steps at the back of the frame creating depth in both- the story and the image. The reflection creates an echo of the story scene to engage the viewer. ( M-aperture f8, exposure time1/13s, ISO 250, focal lenght 18mm)