‘Through Our Eyes’
I am making this book available as a PDF download for all who are interested:
It is a large file (17 Mb) so make sure you’re on a good (and cheap?) internet connection.
“When people look through their eyes at the world they inhabit what they see has an effect on their feelings, emotions and thinking and behaviour. Each experience is unique and each experience can be very profound, thought provoking, controversial, uplifting, confusing. A photographer attempts to create an image that can recreate these effects in other people by producing something they witnessed in a form that others can view.
However, the meaning and context the photographer used to create their image can be difficult, if not impossible, for the person viewing the image to decipher. Ask ten people to interpret the same photograph and you are likely to receive ten different interpretations! The vast majority of us experience this every day. We are bombarded by images through television, newspapers, online via the internet and advertising
We see and read these images in a manner our brains have been conditioned to understand from our family, language, cultural and economic background, our educational experiences, our likes, our dislikes, etc. etc. etc… The images in this book have a common thread. All five photographers were involved in producing images within a framework of Through Our Eyes, Our Hearts, Our Minds’. Other than this simple phrase, we each produced images of our own personal experiences of
‘Magic Bus India’ and the environment in and around the city of Mumbai. This was a collaborative photographic project. The four students had never held a camera before. They were given little information about the camera apart from how to switch it on. press the shutter release and, these being digital cameras, how to view the resulting image.
Acting as a ‘mentor’, I deliberately avoided saying what images I wanted! The images produced during this project are different because they are images the students wanted to create. They ‘played’ with the camera settings. They used their imaginations. They thought about what the image would look like before pressing the shutter release! Nearly all the colour images are produced by the students. A few have been created by their colleagues, as part of the remit of the programme is for the knowledge to be passed onto others, not just in Magic Bus, but also the communities that the Magic Bus students operate in. Thinking about what type and style of images they want to create, and the
‘message’ or ‘story’ behind the image is valuable. But equally important is understanding how others who view the resulting image may interpret a completely different meaning. The monochrome images are my own. There is no text to go with these. They look to serve as chapter breaks and to give an insight as to how a ‘foreigner’ explored and ‘saw’ the environment as a visitor. An environment my young colleagues see as ‘home’.
The combination of photographs in colour by four ‘Mumbaikers’, with my images in black and white will, hopefully ,start a process of questioning by the viewer, the
‘reader’, of this book. I believe all five of us who’s images are shown here took part in a profound learning experience. It was not just about creating photographs. The process became an exploration of how people see the world around themselves and how we communicate through visual images of all kinds to help explain to others what we see and how we interpret the world around us. This also informed each of us how we react to the images that bombard us on a daily basis, and how we interpret the ‘messages’ they contain. My hope is that the combination of images from different ‘eyes, hearts and minds’ provokes questions and thought from all who see this work.”
I would be very interested to hear from anyone regarding this publication.