Vanitas Early Work

Before I could move onto the second section of the project, I first had to learn how to shoot vanitas imagery. I analysed vanitas paintings as well as recreations by photographer Jereon Luijit and artwork by Ori Gersht. The earliest works followed Gersht's work more the Luijit's. However, I decided to move against it and stick to more original vanitas imagery. The photographer shows a flat image devoid of unique angles or raised items. The lighting, although basic, was the ground work for the rest of the project.

The second attempt at imagery still included elements of Ori Gersht's work, Pomegranate, but contains more vanitas construction. The lighting setup had gone a step further as the background light now consisted of a beam light in an attempt to recreate a sunset. The plate and rugged cloth demonstrate an early attempt at set construction. The shallow depth of field resulted in the background items such as the hanging fruit and candles being out of focus which I did not like. Dapple lighting had also been introduced to add intrigue to the image and the new angle was a step further in a better direction.  

The second to last image contained elements of the previous lighting setup, angle and imagery. The beam of light is stronger and items were raised off the table to break up the simple line. The white background instead of black helped make the image's items more visible. Shadows had started to become seen but were not as dark as they are in vanitas paintings and photography recreations. 

The final image demonstrates the most effective use of lighting as while the background light is separate from the main light, they work in tandem to create the illusion of natural window light. The vanitas symbolism is arranged in ways where they were all visible and some are raised from the table to break up the simple structure. Although the image doesn't carry a specific meaning, the multiple items each with their own vanitas symbolisms compensate for the lack of a single image meaning. 

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