Surfaces and Strategies 

I began the MA exploring the ideas of what is left behind by other people, particularly stories and memories. My first project was based on the passing of my old tutor John, I was given some of John's expired Polaroids and this began the project. John has a memorial bench put over my local park and on each dog walk I go and visit the bench. I observed the tree, and continue to observe the tree developing and changing throughout the sessions. I linked my photographic practice to the tree and used it to express not only my feelings in regards to John and the magic he would bring, but the varying emotions felt during my time there. 

This soon developed into thinking about the stories we are told as children. As a child I have been brought up to use my imagination, believes in alternative worlds and fairy tales which has impacted my life. My second project was based on Greek Mythology as well as the Hawstead Panels at Christchurch Mansion. The panels are similar to emblems and are paired with Latin Statements. I used the statements to link to Greek Mythology to produce my images. 

During mynproject within informing contexts I continued with Greek Mythology and the Hawsead Panels however as the project naturally progressed it became more linked to how many past stories always bring us back to our affiliation with nature. Nature is used whether that be through animals, the land, trees, etc to teach us morals but also to contemplate our past, present and future fate. 

During this module I am going to be continuing to look at stories and narrative photography but look more closely as creating a my own narrative and story using models and their beliefs linked to nature. It'll become a research project into their pasts to see whether they have been brought up to have these beliefs or whether they have due to their experiences. 
I intend on creating a series of narrative images, film and poetry alongside each other to create a book. I intend to use natural forms collected on the shoots to create some cameraless images such as cyanotypes. I will continue to research into the longevity of cultural story telling and how these stories impact and influence our lives.

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© Mikaela Jade Rackham 

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