Tuesday, February 4, 2014

"The Lawrence Difference" - Photo Book

    In designing the layout for the photo book of "The Lawrence Difference" I decided to go with an intuitive approach. When taking the photos of the set I was very meticulous of the composition and coordination of every individual shot and so thought that it would be best to just let the shots come together on there own with no particular path set to guide them. Each photo was created to fit in with the overarching theme of diversity at Lawrence University while still using Robert Frank's style of taking the everyday mundane and using it to create a social commentary.
"REVOLT: Challenge the System "
      Marshall McLuhan in, "The Medium is the Massage" states that "Our official culture is striving to force the new media to do the work of the old." I think that this plays out in the printing of digital photos and the creation of this photo book. We are taking what would have other wise been a modern digital creation and creating a book of art which in itself is something usually seen in the past. My process in designing the book consisted of importing all my photos into snapfish and laying out the pictures that just felt to naturally come together. I chose not include any text or captions for the pictures because I believe that they speak for themselves. I decided to include a description in the back of the book of the overall theme in hopes of guiding individuals through the thought process I involved myself in while creating the images. 
       In the sense that I am trying to portray it as, "diversity' can take on many different meanings. To one person my photographs can be about race, to another gender, and to another even randomness might come through. It is this fluidity of meaning that I was reaching for in this project. I want any Lawrence student or faculty member to see these photographs and ultimately see a part of themselves in the work. 


  1. I'd like to comment on your skill in incorporating geometric organization and color narration through your work. Being able to look at simple pictures with inanimate subjects tends to be a boring task, for me personally. But the way that you use color, contrast, symmetry, and organization of the subjects really narrates a stronger message than the items themselves. I applaud your skill in making interesting, professional, neat, and captivating photos that exceed their simple appearance at first glance.

  2. Steven, I can't stop leafing through your photo book on Snapfish! I think your juxtapositions work perfectly and I really enjoy your full page spreads and find them to be very powerful - especially the one of the auditorium. Even though you approached the project in an intuitive fashion, I found myself seeing hidden narrative as I looked closely at each page spread.

  3. I agree that you have a skill in bringing life to repeated inanimate subjects. I am glad that you decided to not include text for your photos, this might have made them seem a little cliché. Also, using intuition for these photos was a good call. All of your photos have a strikingly similar in tone and style (in their diversity) so clashing of photos and ideas would not likely arise as a problem

  4. Steven,

    I know you mentioned you did an intuitive approach when it came to organizing the book but I really enjoy the sequence of the different types of shapes throughout each page. Some pages showcase more linear objects while others (ex. the chairs) have more of a curved composition. I like the diversity of not only the shots, but also the colors you used to symbolize "difference". Great work!