It’s always daunting taking on a project that’s totally outside your comfort zone. In truth I’ve never been asked to make a short film about ‘dealing with depression as unprocessed grief’ before and the idea of mourning our losses – personal, emotional and spiritual as well as physical, intrigued me. Sometimes photography is obvious but thinking up original images for concepts like loss of trust, of love, hope, purpose and lost opportunities was definitely challenging. Most of all I wanted to take the viewer on a visual journey of emotional connection. It takes courage to do something different and sometimes it scared the hell out of me but it takes more courage to face your inner demons and cross The Bridge.
Bless me blogfather for I have sinned….it has been too long since my last post and I am overcome with feelings of social media shame. I also confess to stealing that line off the wry and witty Dominic Wells who was the screenwriter on Dotty – which I shot last year and for which Sadie Frost has just been awarded best actress by the Hollywood independent Film Festival.
Maybe I over think it, maybe I’m too self critical, maybe I’m just more concerned about taking new and original photographs than I am in posting them – whatever, I promise to try harder to be a better blogger for 2014!!
I’ve always looked for the beauty in dereliction. Decaying, abandoned buildings, peeling walls, rusted artifacts and long discarded objects all hold a visual fascination for me. I spend time searching out and photographing these places – both in their own right and as a backdrop for my environmental portraits.
Recently I stumbled across an old abandoned ‘finca’ with an amazing series of graffiti artworks decorating its walls and inhabiting its spaces. It was a gallery of work – years in the making, that nobody had ever seen. Through each room you could see the development of the artist as they fueled the need to paint these crumbling walls. I was intrigued by this ‘unknown’ artist and what inspired them to paint a building that would soon be demolished. Most of all I was overwhelmed by the respect the ‘unknown’ artist showed this devastated house and how the graffiti complimented, rather than detracted from, its environment.
I posted a photo of the ‘artwork by unknown artist’ on Instagram but nobody knew more of this mystery creator.
I was left with nothing but questions. What drives an artist to produce art that may never be seen, let alone bought, by anyone? When the building is demolished and the artwork reduced to dust – where does that leave the artist?
I can relate to the physical need to make images – to take photos or paint pictures, because it is compulsion, obsession, vocation and from the day I left the ‘finca’ I was determined to find this fellow artist.
I did that yesterday. His name is Mangüe López. He’s just 17 years old. If he had a website to link to I would but he’s an original talent and he’s not doing it for the fame or the gain – he’s just doing it because he is.
on a recent trip to New Zealand I discovered that it’s cities have a rich and vibrant history of graffiti and street art.
Sadly most of the public spray paint art in Auckland had been erased in preparation for the Rugby World Cup 2012
so I missed out on seeing some its most iconic pieces but I did get a chance to meet up with many of the artists driving the regeneration and appreciation of this evolving art form.
Thanks to all those who took part and to the hugely talented aerosol artists I missed meeting up with – I hope to catch
up with you all further down the road to continue this project.
For more information on each featured artist – just click the images below…