Constructive Narrative Essay
Wiltshire College Salisbury/Bournemouth University
BA (Hons) Photography – Year 1
In Photography, there are many different styles and techniques used, every single photograph is constructed; from the setting up of equipment, finding the model, producing the set, taking the images, and finally choosing and editing final images. You can also de-construct many images, and produce a narrative towards the photo, create a story and being able to produce a meaning in your own way, or what you think the photographer is trying to create behind the image itself. Photography is also a piece of art, not just a picture; every photo a person takes, produces a symbol in some way, such as a symbol in a painting, almost like a meaning. This is the same as a photo; every photo has a meaning no matter what the meaning is or if each person has a different meaning to the photo. My main focus for this essay, is on the juxtaposition and the semiotics of a photograph. As Barthe's theory highlights semiotics is a sign; a sign of which can be a simple road sign, or even a sound or body language, but it can also be to a great extent a photograph or a painting; this highlights the fact that everything has a meaning, not all meanings will be the same, everyone has their own interpretations. As discussed, in Barthe's Dialectics 1, he suggests that images represent 2 messages; one of which is the denoted message, the construction of an image an what is in it, its 'photographic message' and secondly the connoted message; our own interpretation of the image itself. In each photograph, each person has their own idea of a reality within the image, therefore relating this to the essay, juxtaposition with 2 images can always have a reality and meaning, and each photo will link in some way due to every photographer having an intention or message they wanted to display, creating a narrative. Alfred Hitchcock, 2 stated that 'Although, the camera is an observation station, the act of photographing is more than just a passive observing.' From this evidence, this shows how he believes the camera itself can create a reality or narrative or some sort. Documentary photographer, Felicia Webb, is known for her humanistic projects which focus mainly on various social issues. People with eating disorders, obesity, anorexia, are all people she has worked with. Her photos are all real life situations, which makes it a lot more emotional and dramatic knowing that people actually do get like this in an illnesses. By doing this, it shows people how it can damage; not only your physical image but also your mental image. This can also effect your relations and friends as well, and by making this aware to the world, it therefore will encourage people to see this as a harsh disorder. Also all her photographs seem to be very dark and eerie, this approaches the meaning of all her photos, telling people that this is a dangerous illness and can kill you. Felicia, doesn't only create a physical and mental meaning in all her photos, she also advertises the effects of the illness, such as anorexia it almost tells people what the after effect is and what will happen to you as you deteriorate, and also another illness could be obesity; this can also make a big difference in your life negatively, and Felicia shows people what is happening throughout the world, She also creates a great composition of the image, and a narrative she uses within the photograph itself. The main focus is anorexia, Webb's photographs are quoted from Natalie, who is actually the girl in the photographs who has the illness. She quotes 3“The voice constantly whirrs round in my head, I'm too fat, too big, taking up too much space.” These titles for her photos, make the image a lot more touching and stressful, and it highlights the semiotics here; the real life image, but also the actual quotes the girl has been saying whilst having this illness. This will hopefully...
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