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Hot Brief "Friends" winning image by Ester Valverde
Human Energy in Water by Alix Carmichele
More about the exhibition In Alix's own words:
Whether it be a deep fresh lake; a river running through it or our magnificent oceans, water is both friend and foe and central to the human story... The archetypal meaning of water in our dreams is that is provides life but can also harbour mysterious perils and therefore has an emotional representation. Ancient Greek philosophers believed that water was one of the four classical elements, along with fire, air and earth and was regarded as the basic substance of the universe. In literature, water it is the symbol for purification and the study of water in art has often been depicted as a stylized symbol. In other times, it was represented in a more realistic way, but regardless of the case, water always determined the overall mood of an image. Female water deities have received particular interest from artists, an interest which has evolved into an obsession of creating images of women bathing.
In my twenty years of being a photographer, I have found that the hardest image to make is of a pregnant woman, it’s almost impossible to show her body in a flattering way, especially as she nears her full term. When my sister became pregnant, I wanted to capture her glowing essence, but felt that shooting her in a studio or on dry land, so to speak wasn’t going to cut it for either one us. I started to wonder about our first nine months in the womb and how we lived there submersed in amniotic fluid, how comfortable and safe we were automatically breathing in and out, alive. This led me to create my first water image of her at seven months pregnant submerged in what isn’t our natural element.
Philosophically, emotionally water can mean many things to us, it is the life force that nourishes us yet we are not equipped to inhabit it permanently. I wanted to create an impression of her with her unborn child, he contentedly floating inside her while she is suspended in her own metaphorical womb, my canvass, the swimming pool. The gravity of her seven month pregnancy was carried by the water allowing me to capture an exquisite rendition of a pregnant woman. I wanted to know more about other people’s energy in water so I recruited some friends and the results were very interesting. Each independent study reveals how comfortable or uncomfortable people are in water, as well as the turbulence or energy they create, when asked to do a simple turn.
It's the first exhibition Alix is holding since she won her precedent setting court case against the South African state and it's well worth visiting if you're in the area and fancy a bit of culture, a chance to meet Alix and have a glass of wine.
Awkward Student Photos
Toy Plane Takes Off In A Photo Series
Web designer Varun Thota's great photo series ‘#mytoyplane’ shows the creator's hand holding a toy plane over urban and rural areas of Macau.
Thota says he was inspired by the ‘#putaplaneonit’ hashtag and created the series of images using a toy Airbus A330 found by his father in a chocolate Kinder egg. "A lot of the photos using that hashtag are quite amazing and it was interesting to see how people even blended in photos of planes with insane backgrounds,” he told Instagram in a blog post. “I wanted to do something similar, and the idea of using the perfectly sized Kinder Egg planes with someone holding it to add perspective was what I decided to try.”
“The thing I enjoy most about the series is how fun it is to include other people in it,” he added. “It’s always fun to show people the plane, tell them the story and then ask them for a helping hand in taking the shot.”
You can find more photos on the series in Thota’s Instagram.
Photographing pitbulls in a positive light
When it comes to choosing a favourite breed of dog, a pitbull rarely makes the shortlist.
Douglas Sonders - Washington DC photographer and proud Pitbull owner - has created a campaign called Notabully.org, in order to dispel the negative impression of pitbulls. Through touching pet portraits and local school visits, he has already gathered a lot of positive support from fellow pitbull owners, including celebrity dog trainer Cesar Millan.
Sonders hopes to raise awareness that pitbulls are not violent animals and that ‘bully breeds’ are worth adopting.
Nostalgia through photo-sharing
As we live in an age of on-line photo sharing, it is easy to forget that memories and a common feeling of nostalgia remained at the heart of photography before the digital age.
The theme of nostalgia is a common feeling and photographs tend to bring back fond memories of times long forgotten. While people are now sharing photos instantly through the internet, it is easy to forget that there are pictures taken at a time when digital technology was nothing but a far-fetched dream.
Various social media channels and websites, such as @HistoryInPix have been introduced to share historical photographs with modern audiences, bringing in a wealth of nostalgia that may have remained undiscovered. Images such as Piccadilly Circus in 1949 and a 1890s portrait of Cornelia Sorabji, the first woman to study law at Oxford University, are amongst the gems shared by history enthusiasts.
As well as the capturing key moments in time, the photographs also highlight different tones and techniques, showing how image taking has evolved throughout the ages.
Via The Guardian
Drawings ‘come to life’ in photo series
It is rare to see a figment of your imagination come to life but Canada-based photographer Shawn Van Daele has turned his creative talents towards a heart-warming cause – bringing the dreams of ill children to life.
‘The Drawing Hope Project’ is a non-profit organisation created by Van Daele, which aims to show children with serious health issues that ‘anything is possible’. Using drawings from children as inspiration, he uses his photography and Photoshop skills to create ‘real’ photographs starring the artists themselves with magical results.
From fairies to superheroes, the children shine in the images and Van Daele’s charitable efforts brings a smile to his ‘subjects’ and their families, not to mention raise awareness to his venture.
Famous music covers hit the streets
Music album covers are the latest artworks to get the Google Street View treatment, as iconic covers featuring streets and buildings are meshed with their actual locations through online maps.
The selection of covers, which include ‘(What’s the Story) Morning Glory’ by Oasis and the ‘Abbey Road’ cover by the Beatles featuring a now famous pelican crossing, span over 50 years yet they blend perfectly into their surroundings. Even though some of the locations made famous on the covers have changed completely, it is fascinating to see the inspiration behind some of the world’s well-known albums.
Via The Guardian
Around the World in 80 Diets
Photographer Peter Menzel has captured dietary differences around the world in his latest documentary “What I Eat: Around the World in 80 Diets”.
Lifestyle and cultural differences are reflected through the meals people consume on a daily basis and they range from 'liquid lunches' and the nutritious to the carb and snack-heavy.
Looking at the different diets, it does make you think twice about having that extra chocolate bar after lunch!
Via Lost at E Minor
Don’t Photoshop, go Natural
The recent no make-up selfie trend took the world by storm, raising over £8m for Breast Cancer Awareness. It celebrated the all-natural look, with millions of women braving the camera without their makeup but do women still want a perfect portrait given the choice?
Two volunteers were asked to take a natural selfie with their mobile phone, before having their portrait taken by a professional photographer and then having it enhanced by Photoshop. After looking at the results, even though both women commented on how good they look in their professional portraits, they didn't feel the images reflected them as ‘real women’.
The fight for real beauty has come in many forms, from magazine boycotts and social experiments, but this small yet simple test only proves that women are no longer hiding their personality behind Photoshop.
Via DIY Photography