Love affair with a difference
28 Mar 2011
One day I fell in love and the object of my love was multiple exposures.
As an artist I had always loved the process of layering within the realms of painting and printmaking.
More than 25 years ago I used to use a flatbed scanner to scan my art imagery after it had been converted to transparencies along with 3d objects to create a depth within an image.In those days I used to print large scale images on plan printers used for architectural drawing and exhibit them within installations in late 80's
The method of using a flatbed scanner is still in use today as a photographic tool but at the time I didn't really think of it as a form of photography. It was just a means to create what was in my head...
Then came photoshop at it's most basic level which many used to layer images but I never found it satisfactory and to be honest the results it yields are very different to multiple exposures.
I had always loved multiple exposures for their complexity and depth. Their charm for me was also their spontaneity and using what was available within the realms of what you were capturing in that moment A friend very interestingly said photoshop was a method of creating at a desk rather than in the moment and more and more I tend agree with him. It is not to say photoshop does not have a place within art but purity of photography is something that should be revered as well as explored.
Over the years I had experimented with composite imagery but many many hours were needed to be spent at a computer and it's always felt less than organic and rather empty to be honest..It was interesting to be able to learn but in my opinion it's place really is within the realms of illustration and not photography...It was fun but meaningless without the concept of trying to capture the moment and I think it's something that many have forgotten within the medium of photography...
Eventually I started to use a camera and to learn what it could do..it was like a light came on and I saw the dream world in my head...
So I hope this essay encourages others to let loose and experiment with their camera....Use the camera upside down, photograph light sources and basically experiment within your moment in time...embrace it fearlessly.
Don't forget to underexpose other wise you will have hot spots from double or triple the exposure to light and just embrace the spirit of exploration.
I now have the utmost respect for those photographers that use film to create multiples as a lot of it is left to chance whereas digital can be controlled to some degree.It's something I am learning at the moment with film and look excitedly to the future when I can share the results with those that are interested.