Insentient Portrait Series, 2011
Antique malls are ever-changing “cabinets are curiosity” for me. I particularly enjoy the personalities of each booth and how they are displayed. Within these booths, I find that the mannequins, dolls, and statues that live within these spaces are dramatis personae – not just objects on a shelf. Like humans, some have a long-term or permanent role to play and some are unsettled, filling a position for only a brief period of time. The one thing they have in common is the vendor of the booth. The vendor is the master that controls the role(s) they are to play. Although I like to call these spaces “found scenes”, the act of photography essentially changes the scene from a still life to a portrait of that character in its habitat.
This series of portraits is an exploration of the identity of these inanimate figures brought to life by their role in life, and how the viewer draws on the clues and their own interpretation to create meaning.
Shot with Twin Lens Medium Format Camera
Silver Gelatin Fiber Paper
The work is hasty, because we didn’t have much evening left, but we still had fun with it.
I’m thinking it is high time that I commit myself to a 30-day photo challenge. I like to work more “out-of-the-camera” with alternative and experimental processes, so I forget to keep my camera close and to be more spontaneous with it.
Also — my 8 year old daughter has asked me for some time now if she could set up a scene with her Barbies to create a photograph. Wouldn’t it be a great day to finally grant her wish? Yes! Wouldn’t if be fun to let her help me out with my 30-day photo challenge? Absolutely! It is going to be very fun brainstorming ideas with her and seeing what we come up with.
I let her decide on the scene she wanted to set. And as soon as I told her we could go outside with it, she knew exactly what she wanted to do. Here are the two shots we liked the best.