WiP #9

At first glance, when looking at the original composite and the composite I’d just made, not much has changed in terms of place. However, upon closer inspection the composites reveal change which took place sometime in the 5 or so months since the original was created. I feel the time between composites allows for change and it is up to the viewer to look for the differences. It is also up to me as the artist to entice the viewer in. I’m beginning to think this will come with how I eventually present the composites (including text) as well as framing the composites as similarly as possible so these differences are more discernible.

Some differences start to emerge when comparing the two images more closely. These include the people within the composites. I tried to wait for people to step into similar positions the people within the original composite had occupied. As I have mentioned in earlier WiPs and Assignment 3, this is a powerful method for making the viewer look twice when looking at a diptych. However, I am not sure of its efficacy for these two composites. Of course there are differences in how the people are positioned in the new composite relative to the people in the original. I feel, because the people are much closer to the camera than in WiP #6, the differences are more palpable. In one way this is good in that change is apparent which could make potential viewers look closer still for any other changes. On the other hand it distracts from the immersion into the scene as viewers could be left wondering why the people don’t match up precisely.

11. 51º28'30.093"N 0º1'33.957"W, July 2019
11. 51º28’30.093″N 0º1’33.957″W, July 2019
WiP - 51º28'30.093"N 0º1'33.957"W, January 2020
WiP – 51º28’30.093″N 0º1’33.957″W, January 2020

The other major change comprised of an apparent change in ownership (or at least design of the front and interior) of the shop in the middle distance behind the anchor. There is now a mural on a corrugated door, signifying gentrification and the signs indicating ownership of the shop have gone. Instead there are a row of pictures in frames along the bottom of the window to the shop. Lastly, some of the paintwork at the top of the shop has changed to be more consistent with the rest of the shop. These changes for me seem subordinate to the changes of the people between composites.

It has become clear to me that I need to decide how to incorporate people within the composites that follow the initial composites. Should they be based on the composites that have gone before? I can’t find a convincing argument for this other than making the viewer potentially look again at the images to compare them. Or should the new composites be formed on their own merits; with the people arranged to create a compelling image in its own right? I think the answer lies somewhere in between, where some of the figures roughly match the initial composite and other figures are added/removed relative to that initial composite. This way I don’t have to adhere to exactly to the constraints of referring to the initial image. Instead I can create compelling images that build upon the initial composite but don’t mimic them.

WiP - Diptych of 51º28'30.093"N 0º1'33.957"W
WiP – Diptych of 51º28’30.093″N 0º1’33.957″W

By travelling down this path, I will probably have to go back to some of the other composites like the ones found in WiP #6 to make them consistent with this new direction. There I will remove or add people to mix up the placement of the people so it isn’t simply an imitation of the initial composites. Luckily, I have shot a lot of images which means I can incorporate or take away figures accordingly. In doing so I might be able to create more telling images based on the rhetorics I explored in WiP #8.

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