During the process from start to finish from making my project proposal to making the final piece that I want to present I have made many changes to the original idea, at first I did not want to edit the images to much as it was not something I had done before but when going through my stage of development I thought that overall the way in which the images have finished up is more in keeping with the original brief that I proposed early into the process. I stated in my proposal that I wanted to focus on a single subject to transform the frame in which I had shot and a subject that changes a whole landscape, I feel that in my three final prints I have stayed true to this proposal and though 2 of the images have contents in the foreground I feel that the way in which they are edited with the high contrast of the black and white makes the focus solely on the single main subject being the tree. Also in my project proposal I stated that my final images would be presented in black and white as I felt it would improve the final piece I feel I have stayed true to this plan also as the final images are presented as high contrasting black and white images, during the development process I focused on the work of David Burdeny and tried to edit my images to his style but after looking at the work of Harry Callahan I decided to flip the images to the completely contrasting blacks and whites although it was not as I originally planned I feel the final images are true to my brief and true to the final idea I had in mind when presenting my project proposal.
from conducting research into trees it lead me back to think of the time when i first saw a tree that stuck in my memory and meant something to me, the Willow tree has always stood out to me and been key in my family as my name translates to Willow but the first tree i remember seeing which stuck was the Major Oak in Sherwood Forest, as a child growing up i was always interested in the tales of Robin Hood and coming across the Major Oak was a key moment for me it is famous for its relation to the tales of robin hood being known as the tree in which Robin and his merry men would gather, seeing this tree for the first time was a memory that is till remember clearly now it stands out as such an old tree yet so strong and powerful among the other trees that surround it, this tree is a prime example of how stories and meaning can be attached to a subject like a tree and the relevance and importance it carries .
This video shows a news report from Ukraine showing the importance of the oak tree and the way in which people see trees even to this present day.
Within looking at the art movement of minimalism in my final piece I have decided to focus the subject around trees from conducting a shoot in Richmond park focusing on trees I found that it interested me in the trees themselves I wanted to look deeper into trees and what they mean to people, I also was intrigued by how long trees can survive for which for me I think optimise’s minimalism as a tree can stand full of colour or with bare branches in a blank landscape on its own for years creating the form of minimalism.
To forms of tree I looked at in further detail were the following,
The oak to me is a tree that in England is key and represents many things that many people hold dear is shows strength and many people use the tree as a comparison for the qualities it holds, from choosing this tree I looked at the tree in more depth, the Oak tree is a tree of 600 species which sheds acorns and is commonly represented by its spirally leaves, The Oak has been used to make products for hundreds of years throughout England some of its uses include timber for Wine and Whiskey barrels, the bark is used as a tannin for producing leather and its wood has been used throughout the Northern Hemisphere for building structures homes and places of worship, from this I looked into the deep mythology of the Oak tree the main focus for me was the mythology in the united Kingdom surrounding the oak tree I found that the Celtic druids saw the oak trees as a gateway to another world which leads on to how the forest is looked upon as an enchanted place within art.
Common Yew/ Taxus Baccata
The common Yew tree is a conifer tree which is found throughout the UK , it is an evergreen plant which means it has shoots all year round giving it the ability to stand out in a landscape, Yews are synonymous throughout England and northern Europe they have long be found in graveyards and it is believed that due to the size of the trunks they were used as a place to gather monks some so wide to hold 30+ people due to there age some being over 2000 years old.
Below are a set of images which show the presentation style that I have chosen for my final images, I have firstly decided to present the images in a box I wanted to place them inside a box to keep the minimalistic style strong throughout the presentation, inside the box I chose to mount the images on white foam card, my first instinct and design was to place the images one on each card and leave them separate so the images could be removed and placed out one by one after looking at experimenting with the presentation I began to join the images in a pull out from I decided to use this idea because it I feel it added to the piece and I think it helps as it links the separate images all together and keeps the eye flowing through the images.
After constructing the final piece I decided to add a short piece of poetry to the front of the pull out I wanted to do this because of the way in which it is the first thing that the viewer sees and by reading it I felt it would invoke a certain preconception of the work inside and also i felt it was good to include the passage as the imagery and meaning of trees is clearly strong through all art forms and literature .
After looking in more detail at the work of Harry Callahan I find direct links to the likeness of the work I had tried to shoot in earlier shoots, after using feedback from a group Crit I decided to experiment more with using stark contrasts between the black and the whites within my images, before I decided to do this I was experimenting with making the sky within my images the key focal point by making the clouds darker I felt I was making the image more powerful but once comparing the results with my overall brief I had appointed to myself I found that I was losing the idea I was trying to communicate, I felt that by taking the contrasts to the limit it singled out the object of the tree’s more within the image than enhancing the minimalistic ideal behind the images. the images I decided to use in my final piece are unlike much of my previous work but I feel overall that they communicate the original brief with a stronger power than previous work i had tried to use.
Below are a set of images which I have taken from my first shoot and have chosen to edit, i decided to change the levels of the images to create a darker effect on the sky, I feel that by doing this the photograph and the ideas it is trying to communicate change drastically from the images in the previous post.