Dean O'Brien's Blog

CW2 Research: Essay on ‘What makes us interpret an image to be ‘sexy or sexist?’

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As part of my Placing Photographic Practice in Context I am required to complete an essay consisting of 1500-2000 words.  I have decide write my essay on the  subject of ‘Sexy or Sexist’.  Yes indeed, I know what you are thinking.  Put down the tin opener and step away from that can of worms.  This is a debate that has raged through the ranks of photography for years.  This should partner up nicely with my practical assignment which will consist of a model shoot in a ‘sexy’ but not ‘sexist’ way.  I am meeting with the model next week to discuss the shoot and  research clothing ideas etc..  I also plan to interview the model to ask her honest opinion of how she views being shot and what she wants to project through her images.

I want to stress to the persons whom I interview that there are no right or wrong answers.  I just want their genuine honest answer to my questions.  I need a greater understanding of this area of photography if I am going to develop my practice further.

Research which I will be doing for this assignment will include:

1) Conducting an interview with a model

2) Conducting an interview with Ghislain Pascal of The Bob Carlos Clarke Foundation to discuss the work of Bob Carlos Clarke

3) Possibly post clips from the interviews on my blog as they will be recorded (obviously with participants consent)

4) Visit the ‘Best of British’ exhibition at The Little Black Gallery in London.  This contains images by Patrick Lichfield, Miles Aldridge, Terence Donovan, Norman Parkinson, Terry O’Neill, Brian Duffy and many others.  As I am going to be a guest at the opening of this exhibition I am hoping to catch up with one or more of these photographers and ask them about their images

5)  To read the book ‘Photography: The Key Concepts’ by David Bate.  This includes an chapter on ‘Looking at Portraits’ which I hope will help me to understand the elements of a portrait

6) Talk to female photographers to try to visualise what they see when looking at the same thing as me

7) Research the work of Miles Aldridge, David LaChapelle, Helmut Newton and Guy Bourdin

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Written by Dean O'Brien

November 10, 2010 at 1:12 am

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