Use your camera as a measuring device. This doesn’t refer to the distance scale on the focus ring(!). Rather, find a subject that you have an empathy with and take a sequence of shots to ‘explore the distance between you’. Add the sequence to your learning log, indicating which is your ‘select’ – your best shot.
When you review the set to decide upon a ‘select’, don’t evaluate the shots just according to the idea you had when you took the photographs; instead evaluate it by what you discover within the frame (you’ve already done this in Exercise 1.4). In other words, be open to the unexpected. In conversation with the author, the photographer Alexia Clorinda expressed this idea in the following way:
Look critically at the work you did by including what you didn’t mean to do. Include the mistake, or your unconscious, or whatever you want to call it, and analyse it not from the point of view of your intention, but because it is there.
I have been thinking about this exercise for some time and have finally accepted that the the greatest empathy and the distances between us has to be between myself and my daughter. My daughter has Aspergers which is not a condition she suffers from but grows and thrives from. Trying to understand that she will never acknowledge experiences the same way my wife and myself do creates a distance in our relationship that takes time and effort to overcome. The distance is reduced by waiting for my daughter to explain her thought process of trying to understand a given situation and then either myself or her mother trying to break the emotions and concepts down into simpler smaller bite sizes so the distance between is lessened to a point where we are almost on the same page. Engaging in subjects my daughter is interested in is phenomenal as the information gathered is incredible and at times I find myself becoming the student, at these points my daughter is more open to engagement and is more forthcoming with her emotions and not leaving herself feeling isolated and distanced.
The shots I have taken show the process of engagement between myself and my daughter from times I should leave well alone to moments where we can both enjoy each others company and conversations.
The photo I chose for my select image was captured whilst my daughter was creating a piece of art work she was preparing for her Art GCSE exam. It looks like she is completely engrossed in the action of drawing when she was in fact explaining to me why she chose to draw the piece and was only making minor adjustments to the drawing. Before this action she was sat up making eye to contact and merely glimpsed down at this point, the intention was to show a more one to one engagement between myself and the subject but now she looks to be indifferent of my presence.