Joel and Others

Above are a few more photos from my second meeting with Joel, my victim/participant for my strangers task and empowered portrait task. Originally I uploaded images of Joel only for the strangers task but for my final piece in Picbod I want to include images of everyone I meet on a night out. And so the gallery above features images of his friends, as well as one or two my friends, a few strangers and some familiar faces. As a result, as mentioned before, the theme or idea behind my final piece are all the ‘tribes’ I encounter in my social life including friends, strangers and even strangers who become friends, such as Joel.

We all met up again. I’d differentiate between who are mine and who are Joel’s friends but collectively we now consider all of us as ‘our’ friends. As an outcome, these photographs, in a way, suggest a shift in my relationships: strangers becoming friends, as well as the struggles which have already arisen with a few. You may notice that the whole tone of these images are utterly different compared to the images above. This was our third meeting and despite being in the same bar, altered emotions and a solemn atmosphere infused.

Andy and Emmaline, who appear loved up in the first set, who also met each other the same night I met Joel, their dynamic and body language are in striking contrast in comparison to the images of them laughing and cosying up. The pair were having an argument and reached the conclusion of, ‘this isn’t working’. I documented parts of this discussion individually and together, or rather not together. The night was interesting to document. Josh and I were bored beyond relief: Joel was the joking peace-maker whilst Gary, Andy and Emmaline were turbulent, one minute playful, the next serious amidst a disagreement. Overall I just documented the night unfolding around me.

However, on a more artistic note, when I visited the unisex toilets, I found the room really striking: the walls are lined with long thin mirrors encompassing the room horizontally. I instantly thought of Nan Goldin and the multiple images of her friends and herself looking in mirrors. Therefore, I quickly grabbed Joel and took some portraits of him and he in turn took some of myself. I thought that placing an image of the long fish tank next to one of the images taken in the toilet would look interesting in terms of presenting these images, but it would be on a purely aesthetic level.

It was this set of images that got me thinking about documenting different emotions of people on a night out but upon reflection I feel I don’t have enough images to form a strong narrative. And so these images will represent the different scope of emotions within this tribe and the striking contrast between the second night out and this one.

I also took some photographs after the night out at Emmaline’s humble abode. I have also taken other images if myself and some others but am yet to decide whether to include them in my physical and digital artefact. Although, images taken at my friends houses, in particular bedrooms, could reinforce the level of intimacy and friendship I have with those I consider my ‘tribe’.

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