your most difficult "job" ever... here is mine!

Discussion in 'Photographic Aesthetics and Composition' started by gandolfi, Apr 19, 2008.

  1. gandolfi

    gandolfi Member

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    I've been contacted by a group of people in an association called "Open Farming" (direct translation).
    this group is within the ministry of agriculture in Denmark.

    here it is:

    they think the average dane has a biased wiew of how the aesthetics is in a danish pig fram!!

    we normally hear (and see) them, if something is wrong - not when all is good..

    so - they want to make a huge exhibition, that will be travelling around Denmark, where I make my images in a modern pig farm...........

    picture it for your selves:

    I have to make nudes in a place where there will be hundreds of pigs.

    they want to show two worlds of aesthetics colliding..:rolleyes:

    I have accepted, but have used some time to find a farmer, brave enough to lend me his farm..:tongue:

    I have the models (also brave ones!)

    what I don't really have is ideas! how in the world can I make images that make sense (maybe they must be without sense?) in this kind of inviroment?:confused:

    But this is not all.

    I would like to go further.
    I'd like to make images in a modern slaughter house - some images where I use a couple of dead pigs for some stills, and I'd love to get my hands in a couple of stuffed pigs! (but who does taxidermy on pigs??)...

    the pictures will (I think) be made using my "Kill your darlings" method and made with liquid emulsion...

    (maybe toned in pigs blood??)

    I have NO idea whether I can pull this off, but it is the most difficult task I have had in my life, photographywise..

    ideas?
     
  2. Videbaek

    Videbaek Member

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    Finally -- a suitable context for nude photography! (Joking.) What amazes me the most here is the courage of the Danish "open farming" society. They sure are open minded. Probably misguided. People don't want to know what happens in a pig farm, or what it looks like inside. They just want their bacon on Sunday morning. The stench of a pig farm, my God, it's the worst. But be that as it may, it sure is an aesthetic challenge. A little humour could easily go astray -- a picture in which you contrast the shape of a pig's "ham" with the rear end of a model, for example. All too easily you could touch upon sexuality/bestiality and get a very unhappy client (or happy?!). I don't know, this strikes me as a piggishly bad idea all round. Throw caution to the winds, go totally over the top, find a theme (maybe the pigs from Orwell's Animal Farm?) and run with it. Thow pig dung at each other. Smear it all over, write slogans on the barn walls with it like "Pigs of Denmark for a new aesthetic" and "Give us the vote" and "We like bacon too" or "Go oink yourself". Phew. You have quite a job! Can't wait to see the results. Rgds, Svend
     
  3. Pinholemaster

    Pinholemaster Member

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    Hey, at least you only have to make a photograph, how difficult is that compared to spending your entire life AS a pig farmer.

    Life ain't difficult when making pictures. There are far worse things to do.
     
  4. bdial

    bdial Subscriber

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    Wow. Quite the challenge as you say, but there are so many possibilities!
    What if you depicted the models doing some of the chores, pouring feed into the feeding troughs, etc?

    It sounds incredibly interesting.
     
  5. ilya1963

    ilya1963 Subscriber

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    Association of pig skin with skin of a nude female?! Well, at least it has the same tonality.

    This idea supposed to make the pigs look good and healthy and nourished and ready for "slaughter" using beautiful models or do you make your models look like pigs

    I don't know if you know this work here is some thing to ponder :


    http://www.saudek.com/en/jan/fotografie.html?r=2001-2005&typ=f&l=0&f=469

    ILYA
     
  6. rwyoung

    rwyoung Member

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    A MODERN pig farm if its waste management system is working properly and has a well tuned lagoon (lots of good bacterial munching away) isn't that bad. Yes, you can never quite get rid of the smell but it is managed. The problem comes when you get a few too many (or a lot too many) pigs for the containment and treatment system to deal with. Either by accident or because of cost cutting (greed).

    Anyway, I like the idea of comparing the curve of the pig to the curve of the model. Just make sure she (he) wears boots. No barefoot in the pig barn. Not to put it in the wrong context but perhaps use a model with a bit more meat on the bone. Not in the insulting way that "pig" is used as an insult but because a well fed pig has a broad behind and you might need some more scale to your model.

    And by the way, there is a long history of nudity and pigs in art. Porky Pig never wore pants.
     
  7. Nicole

    Nicole Member

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    How about using the nudes female(s) as a "madonna" figure over a pig or two to lift their presence? Does it have to be the entire farm? Surely one or a couple of pigs would be representational enough? Good luck!
     
  8. blaze-on

    blaze-on Member

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    That's what I call earning your bacon..
     
  9. phenix

    phenix Member

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    You’re so lucky to get such a contract! Such an exciting challenging theme!
    You surely need a project behind the images. You need to find the truth behind this contrast association of nudes with pigs. Or is it no contrast, but only resemblance? Be careful with the humor!
     
  10. noblebeast

    noblebeast Member

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    I see a running theme inspired by the "All men are pigs!" school of feminism. The possibilities are numerous and exciting.

    Joe
     
  11. gandolfi

    gandolfi Member

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    challenge yes - possible.... I don't know..

    the task for me is to make images that are not degrading the females - the pigs OR the farmers..

    the problem is, that I actually don't know what to do before I have seen the farm..

    I am aware, that humour here is dangerous!

    hmmm - I live in Denmark - and we have just had the famous muhammed crisis..
    People here are generally "offended" that the muslim world have reacted the way it did. what about making some images putting the christianity on the wall?

    a kind of crucifiction scene with the pigs as "us"... members of a religion, not really caring about it as long as we are fed....(?)

    If I did that, and the danes reacted negatively, then we danes are hypocritical (?)

    gotta think..
     
  12. Krockmitaine

    Krockmitaine Subscriber

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    I don't know how you'll pull this off but I'm sure we'll be floored

    Marc
     
  13. ricksplace

    ricksplace Member

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    How about two of the (naked) models enjoying a beautiful dinner for two, surrounded by pigs and slop.

    Just think of the sexist and sexual innuendos...

    Maybe they shouldn't be eating bacon. Maybe they should. Why did I answer this post?
     
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  15. jordanstarr

    jordanstarr Member

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    Why not spend a day with the pig farmer and go through the motions with him? I think this would help you get a perspective on what the lifestyle of a pig farmer is like and at the same time you'd get to scope out the lighting situation at all points during the day and the layout of the farm. One of the hardest parts of this assignment sounds like there's so many things you can do that you might not even know where to start thinking about it. Maybe a day with the farmer can open up a dialogue of thought that would allow you to view your assignment in a new light.
     
  16. mabman

    mabman Member

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    Wow! The possibilities here...

    I guess the question is, do you get paid to just make whatever art you want (or paid in advance :smile: or is there some sort of approval person and/or commitee before your art sees the light of day (and you get paid)?

    If you have carte blanche, I have a couple of ideas:

    - get a model that's pregnant and/or that's recently given birth with baby - show her (and the baby) with a sow that's nursing piglets (I'd say also possibly a pregnant sow, but I'm not sure the average person could tell what a pregnant sow looks like vs. a regular sow)

    - (echoing ricksplace above) if one possible objective is to show reasonably sanitary conditions, set a table with a variety of food (doesn't have to be pig-based) in the barn and have the models eat while the pigs are around. Not sure what other statements that makes (dead food/live food maybe?), but it might be interesting.

    If it's art that's supposed to be selected by commitee, then you'd have to be generally pretty conservative - not sure if the above would work.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 19, 2008
  17. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member

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    Before attempting this, be sure to watch this video by a fellow APUG member--

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vwfRA615Mx8

    I suppose that if you wanted to get really sexy-crude, you could work something around the slogan used by the U.S. National Pork Board in its advertising campaigns--"Pork. The Other White Meat"--

    http://www.theotherwhitemeat.com/

    Have you ever roasted a filet mignon wrapped in bacon and tied? I see possibilities here...
     
  18. gandolfi

    gandolfi Member

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    I have carte blance - otherwise I didn't want to do it..

    but then I have to think.. which is bad..

    Thanks for all the suggestions above. it all helps.

    About the bacon thing....... I think I'd like to make some "fashion dresses" made of bacon! :D
    Fashion show in a pig farm!!!!
     
  19. phenix

    phenix Member

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    You won't have a project as long you continue to think to/in images. The image is an output, or what you need first is an input. The project I’m talking about is a system of ideas (abstract, not visual yet), that eventually (and only eventually) you’ll have to translate into a system of images.

    Your question is: What is the relation between a human nude and a farm pig? – these are the given data. Or put it like that: What does this association make you think to? Write a list of ideas, than try to setup links between different convergent (consistent, complementary, etc.) ideas in your list, and finally fill in the holes in the new born system with other ideas. You have now your project. It’s only at that stage you should start to look how to translate all this in images.

    And ideas, only you can find.
     
  20. Marc Akemann

    Marc Akemann Subscriber

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    Wow! What a great opportunity for you! They must like your work very much to have asked you to combine your work with theirs. I wonder if it would help to find out which of your photographs caused them to decide that you're the one to do this project for them?

    Something that helps me with photo projects is to put words together related to possible themes. For instance, in your case, "Open Farming In An Open Society", "What's the Big Deal?" and "Pigs Love It Here" are three thoughts that came to mind after reading your original post. With these thoughts, I would come up with photographic ideas. This is the short version of what I do, and, since we all work differently, I'll stop here.

    Can't wait to see what you come up with. I'm sure it will be fantastic!

    Marc
     
  21. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council

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    You could make a reference to Circe, the greek sorceress who transformed men into pigs...
     
  22. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

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    Touché. And it's quite in keeping with Emil's style.
     
  23. Kvistgaard

    Kvistgaard Member

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    ...or your art, which is very distinctive indeed, as I think everyone in this forum is aware of. I can't help thinking that the organisation is trying to create exitement around their cause by scrounging on your work/style. I honestly find the juxtaposition of pigs and - presumably:smile: - beautiful models somewhat contrived - you have to look real hard to see the connection.

    Just my 2 øre....at any rate: good luck, you are going to need it!
     
  24. arigram

    arigram Member

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    A most, most excellent idea!
    Ofcourse that would require one female only and lots of men, so if you're thinking a group of females it could work if:
    you create multiple Circes to reference to the enchantement of all females, all at once or maybe a different one with a different costumed (or not) in each frame.
    Maybe reverse it and have a man to be Circe and women to be Ulysses and his crew.
    Great idea Scott!
     
  25. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council

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    Dress the pigs up in coveralls, and have the Circe model leading the pigs around on leashes... maybe have her leading them toward a door marked "Abbatoir" or somesuch... drape her in some nymphlike gauze of a fabric for added atmosphere.
     
  26. ppaletti

    ppaletti Member

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    Pigs

    I keep wondering what the pigs would look like if Loretta Lux did them.
    As far as slaughterhouse ideas, consult Joel Peter Witkin.
    Personally, I think a nude female angel floating a few feet above a circling pack of piglets would be cute.