Untitled (Memory pods #27, A Missing Memory pod) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale
A version of this photograph was one of my early Memory pods #05 that I had heavily manipulated, see below. In conjunction with version #01, this photograph was drawing me deeper into this investigation of memory and its preservation. In both versions of this photograph, I was interested in the visualization of the missing (memory) pod. With the desaturated version #05, I think that the stem that is missing the pod is very subtle, almost lost amongst the forest of parts, as compared to the version #27 above.
I had not really noticed until last night the the missing pod also meant the death of the stem that had supported it, which was now turning white. The whiteness of this stem as it was in the midst of dying gave me a jolt. I have heard that for the Japanese culture white signifies death and is a color of morning but I am unsure of this. Nevertheless, it is strange to see the whiteness of this stem as compare to the others which still retain the pods.
Second, I have provide a more descriptive title for this photograph. While working on this body of work some of the images seem to elicit a possible name in addition to the series number, but until now I have not included it. I will see how this aspect of the project progresses and if a title of a photograph seem appropriate, I will add it to my working files, then determine the path forward.
Untitled (Memory pods #o5, A Lost Memory) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale
Untitled (Memory pods #25) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale.
After developing over twenty of the memory pod images using the Snapseed app on my Samsung camera-phone, I am going back and looking at these same images again. I might say that these are “straight” images that do not appear to be tweaked. The image above is the first image I manipulated with Snapseed, Memory pods #01 and the image that drew me into this project.
Actually my fist thought was about the capabilities of Samsung 4 and how close it can get to the subject, what would pass as a macro photograph. I am almost sure that my 24-105 L lens on my Canon 5D can duplicate this. Well perhaps if I were to take an image and subsequently crop it to blow up the central region, which I may actually try tomorrow as a what if. Actually this Samsung photograph is pretty impressive.
Nevertheless, this is my first real foray into plants, macro photography and heavy manipulated post-exposure images, as prior to this neither the plants or macro photography was of much interest to me. I have always seem to have an interest in abstraction, which for the last eight years has mostly been using in-camera using prolonged exposure durations.
I think I will revisit some of the other earlier photographs from this Memory pod series to see what they might look like “straight”.
Untitled (Memory pods#24) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale
Seeing these pods on the ground in various states of decay made me think of the many beautiful memories that I have experienced and that have fallen on the way side, many to be forgotten.
Untitled (Anonymous #01) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale
Another project that has been lurking in the background is the concept of personal privacy and concerns with identity theft. I have worked with a couple of different ideas on how to explore this concept. Then I realized that the most elegant might very well be the most direct and simple.
Okay, perhaps with a subtle twist. A buddy of mine from the Photo Exchange, Sandor (aka Demco) Demlinger gave me an almost complete box of 120 Provia 100F Fujichrome (RDP III 120) that was mildly outdated. With an expiration of Oct 2006, even though I think Demco kept this film in his fridge, I expected that I might get a color shift or some other odd artifact in the developed film. So I photographed a series of subjects and dropped the film off for processing (for a few bucks more, I also get a low-res digital scan of the images versus having to scan the transparencies on my Nikon 8000) for normal processing.
Regretfully the processed transparencies came back looking perfect. No color shift or anything else that appeared odd. Perhaps a testament to the enduring quality of the FujiFilm. So I guess this project will progress without a subtle twist.
Now I need to evaluate the results. One aspect I am looking at is the amount of background included around the yellow pouch. How might it look if the image was tighter within the borders of the pictorial frame? Nice thing about 120 film, I have plenty of leeway to crop the image without much derogation of the image, and for how this appears, see below.
hmmmm, the tighter image is worth further consideration, so I just might move in a bit closer when I make my initial exposure.
Demco also gave me some small 10-pack bricks of really expired 120 Ilford Black and White film to mess around with: the FP4 expired in June 1983, Pan F expired in June 1984, and some HP5 that expired in July 1982. Okay, some 120 film that expired 32 years ago might get a bit more interesting ;- D
Untitled (Memory pods #21, May 2014) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale
This morning I was out scouting some more memory pods that I had seen around the area over the past couple of days. It seems that this idea is not going easily away. Stylistically, I have been denaturing the color in my images, but in checking back to my original image capture, I found myself take by the color of the fallen pods. Thus posting both versions even though I think I will be using the top image, #21. Nevertheless, I do find it is always nice to put back-up photograph on the blog to see what it looks like. Like tacking up the different printing versions on my virtual wall.
A nice walk is contemplative and on this one I came up with another idea of what to title this project. And you may have thought Memory pods was the project name. Well maybe it is, maybe it isn’t. I like options!
Untitled (Memory pods #22, May 2014) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale
Untitled (Memory pods #16, May 2014) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale
I was captivated by the composition and appearance of two rose pods after the bloom. What I had not been attempting before this was the documentation and development of the same subject over time. Hopefully apparent the image #16 above was the earlier of the series although the duration was only three days, the memory pods were evolving. Similar to how memory changes over time as it continues to lose its initial vitality and freshness.
I suspect I will continue to follow the progression of this set of memory pods as well as looking at my earlier subjects.
Untitled (Memory pods #19, May 2014) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale
Untitled (Memory pods #07, May 2014) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale
While developing this photograph for my Memory pods series, I kept finding myself introducing a warm hue. Up to this point I have been exploring variations of a neutral or tan background color. Color can convey a whole litany of narratives; such that a warm red can convey warmth & heat as well as either anger or passion. Perhaps this is a surrealist attempt to add subjectivity to the image?
Untitled (Memory pods #04, May 2014) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale
A continuation of my investigation into memory and its preservation.
So I am intrigued as to why these various photographs seem to keep drawing me back. Visually I have made the pods to be more indistinct much like a memory but what about the entanglement? Complexity? Some things that are radiating from a core? A maze of the loose ends? Incompleteness? Some things that have gone haywire?
Untitled (Memory pods #01 May 2014) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale.
This is my first visual experiment in my investigation using seed pods as a metaphor for memory and its preservation. Since I have completed over a dozen, I realized it is going to be increasingly difficult to keep track of each of these so I have decided to start numbering the series. Thus this is 01 and I returned to my earlier two posts and changed the untitled designations to 02 and 03. No significance being attributed to the numbers other than which ones I created in sequence. Numbers are in two digits as I am not sure if I will create more than 99 of these. Then again, perhaps I will create more. I certainty do not know, but no issues if I do. I feel it’s just the right time to follow my muse.
For this image, I was really taken by the visual ambiguity as to what the subject might actually be. After the last 10 years of making a factual appearing image, this abstraction takes me back to my days of non-representational painting. Interesting.
For me this might be representative of how I retain and preserve memories.
Untitled (Memory pod 02 May 2014) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale
I am continuing to work with the Snapseed app and my memory pod photographs. This is another interesting image for me that I developed yesterday, but I wonder about the composition and what draws me in? If the project is about memory pods as a metaphor, then why do I have that part of the plant out of focus?
After working on this image yesterday, I am a bit more reflective on its visual qualities today. Perhaps the memory pods are indistinct and difficult to visualize similar to the ability to see my memories? That the tanglement in the foreground is symbolic of my brain and the potential way synapses occur? And it all radiates out of a core, that of course being my soul, my inner-self and where experiences and memory stems from.
I’m feeling encouraged to investigate this further.