Symbolic Camera

The creation of the symbolic camera was an exercise in the exploration of our relationship with visual anthropology and the use of cameras in relations to our person and history. I have also used this opportunity to explore some of the themes and ideas that we may want to develop for our visual anthropology film. As I haven’t come up with any concrete themes I would like to explore explicitly in my film I chose to focus on my own relationship with cameras and the visual for this exercise.

For me the process of taking photographs has always been something verging on meditative. I find I go inside myself and everything around me stills as I consider the positioning of myself, the world around me, and the camera. Because of this I decided to make the cameras main interest something within, which I conceptualised in two forms. Firstly I chose to make the back of the camera a door which could be opened and the viewer could look through. I wanted to try and bring the inward nature of my experiences with photography into this physical object that can be interacted with. I then placed a small windmill and tulip on the back plate so that if someone was to look through the lens they would see this miniature world captured in stillness. I spent last year on my year abroad in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and very much wanted to try and add in some part of that experience into the symbolic camera as my time there feels tied with the images I took.

One thought on “Symbolic Camera

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  1. A fascinating post. I love the way the black covering increases the attention on interiority and what is within you and the camera.


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