Portraits, 2008-23

Digital reiterations of ‘5×4 inch’ format gelatin silver films

The three young actors, Emily Thomas, Nikki Shiels and Lachlan Woods had volunteered to be photographed in the college studio in front of my slow, tripod-mounted ‘5×4 inch’ film format view camera. I had conceived the simple emotions I asked they express in their faces and bodies – sadness and grief – as metaphors for environmental loss, to accompany a planned set of landscape images. All three actors were a pleasure to work with. They were attentive to my instructions, polite, poised, professional. They did all that was asked of them. But the eventual pairing of the portraits and landscapes proved unsatisfactory. The studio images remained in boxes for a dozen years until, during COVID lockdown, I retrieved the films and decided some were successful, even moving. A selection are illustrated here.