Things Aren't Always As Mother Reports
‘Things Aren’t Always As Mother Reports’ is an examination of the photographer’s young sons. These colour portraits and landscapes, shot in the documentary style, transcend a father’s deeply personal experience to communicate something more universal about boys growing up in the UK today.
“The sudden anguish of missing what is no longer there is like suddenly coming across a jar which has fallen and broken into fragments. Alone you collect the pieces, discover how to fit them together and then carefully stick them to one another, one by one. Eventually the jar is reassembled but it is not the same as it was before. It has become both flawed and more precious. Something comparable happens to the image of a loved place or a loved person when kept in the memory after separation.”
– John Berger, ‘The Fayum Portraits’.
Photography can reveal what isn't always apparent; knowing this, I made my young sons the subject of this project in the hope that I might get to know them better. Working with them enabled me to explore the idea of agency in portrait making. Being their dad and the photographer created a specific, not often documented, power dynamic; these pictures are in part a record of a father’s interactions with his sons. The portraits bring about questions in the mind of the viewer as to what is going on in the boys’ heads – what they think and feel and why.
I was keen to observe how the place and time in which we live affects them. I’ve paid attention to how the boys navigate and process the landscape and how they sit within it. Like any parent I’m concerned about external influences on them, the things that as their dad I can’t control. These pictures provide a glimpse into the boys. They also communicate the concerns of the photographer.
(submission is 10 images from the larger body of work)