Assignment Two – Single image narratives – Rework

This is the reworked version of this assignment for assessment, following feedback and reflection. The revisions were minimal, I decided to swap the cutaway edit of Headache 2 for an unedited version and rework a simpler version of Resolution 2.

The introduction to the final assignment has also been slightly altered.

For further information with regards to research and image choice please click on any of the following links

Assignment Two Research   Original Assignment Two   Tutor Feedback and Response

Assignment Two [Migraine]

Photography is a tool for dealing with things everybody knows about but isn’t attending to. My photographs are intended to represent something you don’t see.

– Emmet Gowin (1941 – )

To convey the idea of the personal and shared experience of physical pain, specifically the symptoms and discomfort experienced during a migraine, a surrealist approach was chosen.

‘Surrealism has been regarded as attempting to replicate the world of dreams’. (Wells, 1997 p.220) Rather than reveal dreams this set of images illustrate the nightmare of the various symptoms experienced through the phases of a migraine, the peripateia- from the Greek, meaning ‘dramatic moment’These phases are Prodromal, Aura, Headache and finally Resolution. The intention is for some of the images to extend or appear to extend beyond the frame to show how pain impacts areas beyond the head and affects many aspects of everyday life.

Photographers in the 1970’s had ‘a new kind of concentration on narrative drama…instead of reality…[showed] us things that were felt rather than necessarily seen.’ Wells (1997 cited Robins 1984, p.213). Artists Louise Bourgeois and Edward Kienholz both successfully did this with various bodies of work; research into these two artists shaped how I considered channeling personal pain into my work. The final pieces will hopefully reflect the surrealist inspiration taken from Daido Moriyama, capturing out of focus images with motion blur, over and under exposure, and John Clang in the way many of the final pieces use mixed media, ripping, cutting and layering.

Clicking on an individual thumbnail below will take you to a slideshow of high-resolution images.

  • Prodromal #1 & #2 – where everything feels out of focus you can’t concentrate, your head feels heavy and full of cotton-wool.
  • Aura #1 & #2 – where people usually have visual problems, such as flashes of light or blind spots, sensitivity to colour, zigzag patterns.
  • Headache #1 & #2 – where people experience a pulsating or throbbing pain on one side of the head, often accompanied by nausea, vomiting, and/or extreme sensitivity to bright light and loud sounds, which can last for four to 72 hours.
  • Resolution #1 &#2 – when the headache and other symptoms gradually fade away, although you may feel tired for a few days afterwards.