Wednesday, November 28, 2012


So, as I have mentioned before, the process of working with the emulsion in the darkroom lends itself to many unintentional results.  There is a lot of fumbling around and bumping into things, and, especially in the case of painting the emulsion on the fabric, it is impossible for me to tell which areas have been covered and which have not.  This leads to me having to work intuitively, guessing and obsessing over areas that I feel have not been covered enough in accordance to what I plan to do with the image.  Much of my emotional state of mind is captured here, for if I am stressed my process is frantic, or if I'm careful there will be areas of evenly applied emulsion.  In this case, I was obsessive over the area I knew a particular part of my body would be which is evident in the area of thick, dark emulsion.  Somewhere in the process of setting up the light for exposure the dimmer switch got lowered, and so when Jace activated the light it was dimmer, not noticeably so, but dim enough to where when I painted the developer on the surface nothing seemed to happen.  At this point I panicked, and not being able to tell if I had accidentally painted on fixer instead of developer I grabbed the other container of chemicals and painted them on as fast as I could.  I didn't discover that the cause was the light until much later, and the effect of fixer mixing with the developer that was heavily soaked into the fabric produced this result: a completely abstracted image that appears random, but in actuality is directly influenced by my body and psychological affect during it's creation.  My body is present in the color variation and in the surface of the fabric, where the drying emulsion preserved the wrinkles I created, and the patterns and uneven emulsion describe my frustration and stress.  

When examining this piece in class, we decided to rotate the fabric in every possible orientation in order to observe how the compositional elements were affected by direction.  Surprisingly, this piece works in all four orientations, with different elements being either highlighted or diminished depending on your point of view.  What appears to be an abstracted open landscape in one sense may transform into a ruined city when reversed, or when the surface appears to be the star of the piece may suddenly become subdued by the emulsion pattern and distribution.  This is very exciting and something that I will continue to explore in other pieces.

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