Material Projects: Me and You

For my next material project, I was put in the group Me and You. In this project, I am looking at portraits. At the beginning, we were divided into pairs and set a task to work as partners to create portraits of each other.

For my partner’s portrait, I looked at Petra Cortright for inspiration. Petra Cortright is a Los Angeles, California-based artist who works with photography, painting and digital media. I will be looking at her work using low tech media to create videos with special effects. She uses her laptop webcam to make videos of herself with effects to distort her face. This link takes you to a video made by her webcam and is called, ‘vvebcam 2007’.

Here, Cortright adds cartoons and special effects to her face while looking into the camera. I wanted to use this type of basic technology, but with basic technology lots of people are using today. I chose Snapchat as it has lots of different effects to create videos and photographs in the same way as Cortright created. screen-shot-2016-11-06-at-17-00-42

Above is a still from the video, ‘vvebcam’.

I also researched Cindy Sherman. Cindy Sherman is an American photographer, she is mostly known for her conceptual portraits. She made a series of 69 black and white ‘untitled film still’s’ made from 1977 to 1980. In each still, Sherman appears as characters from a film. ‘Untitled Film Still #17’ is shown below. screen-shot-2016-11-06-at-18-18-33

Cindy Sherman collected wigs and clothes to create the stills, they are set in many different locations, both inside buildings and outside.

More examples of the Film Stills are above, from left to right, ‘Untitled Film Still #53’, ‘Untitled Film Still #27’ and ‘Untitled Film Still #48’.

I liked the way Cindy Sherman used herself but transformed the way she looked to create the photographs. I wanted to do the same type of thing with Lauren’s portrait and create different persona’s with each photo. I wanted to use the basic technology like Petra Cortright but transform her like Cindy Sherman, showing how times have changed from using webcams to create videos and how we can simply click a button and look like someone else on Snapchat.


Author: emiliasfineartblog

BA (Hons) Fine Art Student studying at Cardiff Metropolitan University

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