Thoughtfactory’s photographic experiments + journeys

brief notes on experimental photographic projects

Photography during the lockdown

The Mallee Routes project is on hold during  the public health lockdown to stop the spread of  the Covid-19 virus amongst the Australia population. The  public health social restrictions  during lockdown  require  that we can only travel within our postcode for exercise.  There may be some lifting of restrictions in a week or so by the federal and state governments,  as the former is anxious to get the economy moving.  

So I have started to explore photographing the period of lockdown, self-isolation and social distancing;  as distinct from continuing to make various types of locally based  photos during the lockdown; or making film photos  for an online exhibition of film photos made during the lockdown  being organized by  the Friends of Photography Group (FOPG). Photographing the period of lockdown is  about our  experiences of lockdown.  This is a unique time  and photography can, and should be,  a part of pausing  and reflecting  upon our relationship with our surroundings.

The exploration is experimental in that there has been a  shift away from a conventional documentary approach. This  means that  I am    stepping outside my comfort zone. I have been thinking about photographing  in a more controlled way by working wth people in a set up situation in specific locations.  As I do not have a treasure trove or storehouse of props to use  in these situations,  my  approach  will need  to be very  simple.    

The picture below  is an early, experimental photo: a first step. I subsequently made a film version on a different morning  for possible inclusion in the FOPG exhibition.  The early morning light on the second photo session was different: 

Whilst on the poodlewalks I have also started searching for close by  locations  that would be suitable  to situate models within.  At the moment the lighting is very simple: it is  the available  low light  in  the morning before sunrise. This is a  scoping image: 

 I am also scoping locations along back country roads to photograph   in the twilight hour so as to illuminate a spect object, such as a tree.  People usually using some form of light painting in these situations,   but I do not have any lighting equipment at the moment. Car lights do not work at all. So the lighting, at the moment  will need to be  available light. When a torch is used  it will be all in-camera work as opposed to using light painting software. 

This a scoping image of a possible location in Waitpinga during twilight. It was scoped for a film image for the online FOPG exhibition. But I can build on this with an additional next step: to introduce  a model into the location walking down the road towards the bridge.