Saturday, March 9, 2013

An ode to my unsung inspirations.


This is going to be a different type of photo for my 365. Some of you may like it, some of you wont. When I was at uni my mate Donald used to say that my worked was heavily influenced by Martin Parr and Mark Power, which I would often reply in distain with certain expletives that are better left to the imagination as I found their work to be boring, uninspiring.

To say that my work reminded my mate of Martin Parr and Mark Power made my blood boil, as an enthusiastic and up and coming documentary photography student at RMIT, I wanted to be nothing like those two, I wanted to be like Oculi and Ashley Gilbertson. Photojournalists, documentary photographers documenting social issues in the world, seeing the unseen, spreading news and imagery in the world, making a difference - oh how the times have changed.

Mark Power and Martin Parr are different in the world of photojournalism/documentary photography. They have a very, stand-offish approach to photography. Yes they will get in close occasionally and get that shot, however, as a whole, they document the environment, they capture the whole scene. The beauty in their photography is that it makes you look into the image. Their images are sometimes quite picturesque and look like paintings, some of their work reminds me of 'Where's Wally' - Martin Parr in particular - as he captures the whole scene, such as a beach, and makes you look into the image to see what it is that he's seen that is so special. At a glance it looks like nothing, a snap shot, but the more you look, the more you explore the image, you realise how good it really is.


I don't know what it is, perhaps my subconscious, but my work (personal) really is inspired by these two. My style of photography is very observant, I like to capture a scene as a whole, I like to see what else is happening in the frame, not just the subject. Hard to imagine now that these two photographers I once snubbed off as hack photographers who didn't belong in Magnum, have now become my idols. Lesson is, never judge too early.. 

Mark Power.

Mark Power.

Martin Parr. 

So lets just get things clear, I don't claim to be as good as Parr or Power, nor do I claim that my image is anything like theirs - it certainly is not - however, there are aspects of it, that are influenced heavily by them. 

Hope you enjoyed a trip down memory lane with me, will hopefully have some more Parr/Power 'inspired' images in the future!


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