This project was for the 4th unit of the first year at university, and was titled ‘individual project’. This have us the freedom to pretty much shoot whatever we wanted. We were first given the task to look back over our previous work and see what was a success and what needed work, it was also to get us to see what kind of photography we are interested in and how we have expressed ourselves in our previous projects. After doing all this I realised that my key interest was portraiture and this is something that I wanted to pursue in the ‘Individual Project’.
Due to the nature of the project I wanted to choose a theme that was really personal to me, I chose to look at grief and the ways in which it can affect people. I started my initial research by looking at quotes, articles and texts all about grief and the grieving process. I came across a text describing the 7 stages of grief that people go through after loosing a loved one. I knew that this was what I wanted to base my project around. I also researched a couple of artist and photographers to see the way other people had shown emotions through their work.
Grief is something that I have had to get used to in the past year after loosing 4 member of my family, of which were fairly sudden. I started to test shoot and began photographing myself in my own room. I wanted to images and project to be as personal as possible so therefore I wanted to be alone and within a space that I feel comfortable. I looked at the 7 stages, Shock, Pain, Anger, Loneliness, The upward turn, Reconstruction and Acceptance, and decided that I wanted to have an image that represents each one of the stages. I began to experiment with different poses, facial expressions and lighting. After multiple test shoots I decided on a camera position that I thought was best and I chose to use natural daylight from the window in my room.
My final images consist of a series of 7 photographs each one reflecting a different stage of the grieving process. I like the way that there is a clear order in which the images go. This project is the most personal to me and I think that this is why I found it more enjoyable and found a natural flow in my work easier.