Peer-group presentations

David Oates set us the challenge to present a collection of photographs that we had taken in front of the rest of the group. I chose to show a collection of photographs I had taken of paint on speakers, inspired by Sue Venables’ book ‘Photocrafty’. On page 104, there is a chapter called ‘Good Vibrations’ which sets out clear instructions on how to capture the dancing paint.

For this project, my kit included:

  • Canon SLR 500D
  • Macro lens
  • Tripod
  • Flash unit with connecting cable
  • Speakers
  • Cling film
  • Acrylic paint
  • Water
  • Music (Justin Timberlake – Cry Me a River)

edit4Photocrafty advises to remove an old speaker from its outer casing and wrap it in cling film or the latex from a rubber glove. As I did not own any old speakers, I had to borrow my flatmate’s £180 speakers so I kept them in their casing and just covered the surface with cling film. I placed the speaker against a white wall in my kitchen to imitate a studio background.edit1I bought three bottles of acrylic paint; red, yellow and blue so that it was possible to make any colour that I needed. It was necessary to mix the paint with quite a bit of water to create a consistency that would be able to bounce when the music was turned on.edit2It proved quite hard to keep all the paint in focus, these three photographs were the ones where I felt that the focusing was accurate and effective. Also, in these images, the viewer is unable to see the texture of the cling film which proved distracting in some of the others. It was a challenge to capture the movement at the right moment – in these, I was lucky enough to have the paint bounce enough to fill the frame. These photographs successfully fulfilled my aim; to show a visual interpretation of sound.

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