re-photographing what’s left




I have spent the afternoon in make-shift studio (the builder we have in at the moment has commandeered where I would normally go!). A few of these objects will need tweaking to resolve the discrepancies between colour temperature and brightness &c. Overall I am quite pleased with the consistency. Thinking about this now, the paper choice will be important as I want to have the flexibility to place these objects on a page on their own but aligned to a landscape. The ruler might be used to provide a scale – not entirely sure about that yet.

My next assignment (4) will be to edit the landscape images,  these objects and the texts that I have collected in a sequenced edit. My thoughts are that the landscape images from Purgatory won’t be very large – perhaps no bigger than A5. I want these objects though to be near ‘life-size’ – which, when they are presented next to the landscapes, will introduce a dynamic to do with scale, and maybe the ‘real’. I need to find more texts.



claspc2 copper studc2 ring4c2 ring3c2 ring1c2 ring 2c2 necklacec2 cufflinks2c2 cufflinks1c2 ring5c2 ring6c2 ring7c2 ring8c2 scalec2 stud1c2 stud2c2 studsc2 studs3c2 studs2c2 stud7c2 stud6c2 stud5c2 stud4c2


7 thoughts on “re-photographing what’s left

    • I don’t think so, though I haven’t really come to a conclusion on whether they are captioned or not. They will be contextualised as part of the statement in some way – what do you think?

      • I was thinking about the metaphor of archaeological explorations and digging down deep into history; how memories become attached to objects like some alchemy that transforms them into a person.

      • That is what the objects are, relics of the person – all that’s left. I needed to find a way of including him and what his absence might look like both in the landscapes and the remnants. I have the texts which will describe both absence and presence. You can see I have some editing choices to make 🙂

  1. Hi John – I have only started to look at your work and the blog, but wanted to start with saying just how effective I find these photos of your father’s jewellery. I keep returning to look at it. I think what they do for me sits in the space between the title ‘what is left’ and then the staged, neutral studio photography in which they are captured. The absence (and thus also implication) of all the relational aspects are hovering between me and the screen with the images. I will take some more time to look at your work before saying some more. Many thanks!

    • Many thanks to you Gesa! Your comments are very welcome, especially as you will not have looked at my work before. The jewellery is totemic for its absence of emotional connection to the man. Yet I want(ed) to describe how I have yearned for what I have missed and I have found that very difficult as my model for it wasn’t there. Thanks again.

      • You are very welcome, John. I was really taken with discovering your images – it is a very different approach towards what is left when complicated men in one’s family die to the one that I have begun to take with my maternal grandfather; and I find it convincing and moving to see this project as a way of making sense of and speaking to an experience and to allow others to find a resonance within/across/between… yes: the emotions of disconnect are pretty powerful things…

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