Week 7 Lecture & Resources
Thoughts on Resources & Lecture
I thought the notion of using a Risograph printer to explore ways of growing and/or supporting a community, as a kind of networking “tool” was an intriguing concept. I can see how offering others a way to publish on a small scale in a really cost-effective (and eco-friendly, relatively sustainable) manner could create an environment that is rich for building connections and collaborative projects.
Visual Inspiration: Idris Khan’s photography
I first encountered the work of photographer, painter and sculptor Idris Khan whilst researching different ways of producing imagery in week 6 of the Contemporary Practice module. His way of overlaying multiple exposures of the same subject, to achieve a composite image with expressive texture and depth, creating an almost ghostly effect, really inspired me.
I thought this was a really beautiful way of interpreting the work of Japanese artist and print-maker Katsushika Hokusai, whereby the imagery is printed directly onto ephemera such as the pages of a vintage encyclopaedia.
Above is a selection of letterpress monoprints from a series entitled Tokyo Papers by Dutch designer Karel Martens. By printing directly onto ephemera such as old forms, the visual effect is layered and elements interact in a way that they wouldn’t, had they been printed onto a more traditional, plain or solid coloured paper surface. Their translucency also lends the prints a softness that gives them a completely different quality from ordinary paper.
Initial Idea #1 – Collaborative Image Making
A spark of inspiration struck when I spotted this article on a collaborative photography project between two cousins living in different cities, who were kept apart by the pandemic but communicated by sharing a visual dialogue, inspired by the words of Tolstoy – which sounds as beautifully poetic as the resulting photographs.
As a result, I revisited some of my own photographs shot on medium-format film, where I’d created a series of images using a double exposure technique – this got me thinking, it would be interesting to set up some kind of collaborative photography project where people from different places/backgrounds could submit their images which would then be combined and layered in a multi-exposure way which creates a brand new narrative through the juxtaposition of imagery.
I posted on the Ideas Wall about this idea and got some interesting feedback – Harriet suggested it could be something like a long-distance game of “exquisite corpse” – described by the Tate as “a collaborative drawing approach first used by surrealist artists to create bizarre and intuitive drawings.”
Initial idea #2: Mental Health “Hub” for young adults
This would be a single central place for young adults to find information on mental health resources available to them. My intention would be to involve them in the development of the platform, most likely a website (or possibly an app), making support easy to access for a generation of digital natives. This way the platform would be more likely to be fit for purpose and I would also encourage young people to contribute to it, potentially facilitating some kind of peer-to-peer support and enabling conversations for those who are interested.
Initial idea #3: Creative workshops for young people, to open up conversations about mental health
For my elevator pitch, I decided to focus on explaining one idea in more detail – the collaborative image making concept. Click on the Vimeo video embedded below to find out more.
Alternatively, to view the elevator pitch on Vimeo directly, visit: https://vimeo.com/583839714
Reflection on the week
One of the most difficult parts of addressing the challenge this week was narrowing down my ideas to just a few (or even identifying which specific one to concentrate on, as they all seemed to have a certain amount of potential). I definitely felt there were several interesting directions I could potentially go in with regards to choosing a collaborative project.
I also enjoyed seeing the wide variety of different creative concepts suggested on the Ideas Wall by my peers – plenty of scope for further development on all fronts!
For my elevator pitch I wanted to keep things simple, as the prospect of having to record my thoughts in audio format was quite daunting. I definitely find articulating ideas when I know it’s being recorded much more challenging.
Hato Press. Available at https://hatopress.net/ [accessed 18/07/2021]
Hato Store. 2021. ‘Shinto Shrines And Buddhist Temples – Tokyo Artrip.’ Available at https://hato.store/products/shinto-shrines-and-buddhist-temples-tokyo-artrip-pos [accessed 24/07/2021]
Lomography. 2021. ‘Photo Stories: A Photographic Dialogue Between Two Cities.’ Available at https://www.lomography.com/magazine/346433-photo-stories-a-photographic-dialogue-between-two-cities [accessed 16/07/2021]
Tate. ‘Cadavre exquis (exquisite corpse).’ Available at https://www.tate.org.uk/art/art-terms/c/cadavre-exquis-exquisite-corpse [accessed 15/07/2021]
Victoria Miro. ‘Idris Khan.’ Available at
https://www.victoria-miro.com/artists/14-idris-khan/ [accessed 22/08/2021]