Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Week 6: Engagement.

So these past seven days have had they're ups and downs. I don't really know where to start, so how about I just confirm for you that, it has involved a number of things relating to music in a positive and a negative sense. So most of my life I have been studying music, and pretty much all of my life I have been listening to it just like everybody else. I have a passion for it, and that will probably stay true throughout my life. By stating this, I do not single myself out from anyone, there are millions of more experienced musicians than me in this world and this is to applaud them.

In my eyes (and ears) music is a language, as is photography. A format of communication that is universal throughout, or is it? This is a tough question and is answered simply by perception and process. We are brought up by our culture and kin, we know what is right and what is wrong according to the world we have grown up in. People grow up differently and have different cultural ideals, it is this built-in code that changes the rules of engagement and may or not be perceived as universal. The languages of Music and Photography are similar in this way. For example, in this stock photograph of a Cambodian woman (http://blungerhog.typepad.com/photos/michaela_cambodia/med_112350145329.jpg) most people from Britain's mainstream culture are aware that this is a woman begging and obviously living in poverty. What the majority of viewers won't know is that the scarf she is wearing on her head is a symbolic indicator that shows she is a member of the communist regime that still controls parts of rural Cambodia, and will stop her from getting shot in most places. It is this knowledge that acts as a "code" that separates photography from the universal.

This is also similar with music. We are brought up listening to what our culture provides us and we have a mixed opinion on what seems foreign to us and vice versa. This is the main thought that goes behind the reason I entered the world of Music Photography.


In this photograph I have captured the Bass guitarist of one of Reading's larger local bands. I have tried my hardest to snap him with an expression and position that best communicates his personality and music style. The engagement of the eyes and the detail in clothing and the instrument are symbolic indicators of his music style and personality in much the same way the scarf was an indicator of the old Cambodian woman's survival. World's apart but still trying they're best to communicate through symbolism.

Song listening to right now: Joe Satriani - Surfing with the Alien

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