Louise contacted me via the post I had put up on a Brighton page on social media.
Louise has suffered from Post-traumatic stress disorder (PDST) for the past ten years. Which has had a massive knock effect on her ability to leave the house over the years.
Lousie the same as all of the people who have sat for me so far are very heavily affected by the ability of not be to leave the house, the effect is physical and well as mental. I am starting to see a pattern between people, this comes from the way they look at how people now see them because they are no longer are able to interact within daily society.
As my two previous sitters, Louise is now trying to integrate herself back into the world outside the window. Louise is a very political person and tries to go to local council meetings when she feels able to. This is still a hard task due to the PDST. We talked about reintegration a fair bit and how it feels to try and reconnect with people that do not really understand what Louise has been and going through. I feel there is a massive loss of connection between people who are able to go outside and people who are not able to.
I originally shot Louise in tungsten setting (fig 3) I decided that the room and the imagery were not working, so I started working in daylight mode and I feel this brings the light out better in the images. I have also shot on tungsten film and pushed the film to 800asa instead of 100asa, this was due to the previous shoots being dark. I am still waiting for the film to come back from being developed.
I have also been thinking about how I want my sitters to be portrayed by well me. I am trying to bring the context of understanding within my work, that my sitters are people with a story, who the world outside their four walls does not know and possibly understand.
A few questions I have been asking myself since this shoot
- Am I representing these people in a correct way?
- Do I feel the context of my images brings their message across?
- Is my imagery demeaning to the sitters?
An image can change the way you look at a subject’s context and the sitter within. If you look at (fig 6) and (fig 7) which were taken seconds apart. the meaning of the two images are very indifferent. (fig 6) Brings the context of someone who is really struggling with the situation they are in. Where (fig 7) Brings across the context of someone who is able to deal with this situation.
This I something I am going to need to approach in my own morels, how I want my work to be seen, how I want to represent people who are in this situation via my project.
(fig1,) Hopes, J, 2020, Louise – interview, Uploaded by author
fig2, ) Hopes, J, 2020, Louise – Contact sheet, Uploaded by author
(fig3, fig4, fig5, fig6, fig7 ) Hopes, J, 2020, Louise – stills, Uploaded by author