Brief:- Repetition of one image or very similar images, whether exactly the same or with slight differences in exposure, crop or image quality, elicits an inquisitive eye. Repetition emphasises the sameness and yet paradoxically indicates a difference. Andy Warhol used this strategy in his screen prints and photographs. In the image below, do you notice how the dog’s ‘stare’ becomes more insistant. Make a still life set-up of your choice, but you can use any subject. Try to emphasise your subject with the use of light. Aim to make around 20 photographs. Choose the best shot and process it to your liking. Now create a presentation of that one photograph that involves six to eight copies. Make some notes on the overall effect.
I found the repetition example used in the Foundations in Photography manual (face of a dog) to be quite uninspiring. To be honest I didn’t find that the dogs stare became more insistant. I would go as far as to say that it was full and unimaginative.
Because of this I was reluctant to produce a piece of work that was a simple replication of the initial image Havin remembered Warhol’s series of Campbell’s Soup cans (a – Warhol, A; 1962), and some pop art posters of Marilyn Monroe, which were based upon his silkscreen canvas diptychs (b Warhol, A; 1962), I decided I would emulate these.
The most challenging aspect is beginning to understand how to use my speedlight. I used gels which cover the flash, but soon found that I couldn’t have them underneath, behind or in front of the camera. The effect was too strong even when the speedlight was on its lowest power output. The amount of light that each gel let through differed significantly, so I had to position the speedlight accordingly. Altering the aperture and ISO was necessary, and I’ve developed the images in Photoshop in order to remove shadows. I’m not comfortable with the speedlight as yet, and it would probably have worked better if I had an assistant with a reflector. Using a speedlight is a new experience, but it would have been harder to create the same result with a gel and light set up.
Warhol, A; 1962; Campbell’s Soup [Synthetic polymer paint on canvas]; Online AT: https://www.moma.org/collection/works/79809 (accessed on 07/11/2018)
b Warhol, A; 1962; Marilyn Monroe [Acrylic on canvas]; Online: AT: https://www.tate.org.uk/art/artworks/warhol-marilyn-diptych-t03093 (accessed on 07/11/2018)