Translation is an investigation into the aspects of a person unable to be captured through photography. These characteristics, which Sartre calls the Transcendental Subject, or Transcendental Self, are the qualities that define us as living, breathing, thinking people. These aspects, due to their indefinable nature, rendered through chemical means, present themselves as abstract representations, rather than clear indicators. In doing so, they stand as universal in concept, the language of the patterns becoming synonymous with the diversity of the people it seeks to illuminate. In this illumination, the partial or complete destruction is rendered in the physical likeness of the object.
The majority of this work is informed through consideration of the self, identity, and the relations between people. The decision to use human subjects comes from a recognised personal frustration with the elusiveness of human traits, which together compose an individual. People and traits alike cannot be defined by any conventional means, but are instead relegated to a collection of ideas concerning who they might be. These ideas are, naturally, shaped by my own assumptions, in turn shaped by my own experiences of the world. As a result, I have turned to the erratic tendencies of unstable photo-chemical processes to create a language lacking a rosetta stone. The illusion of communication is abundant, however the truth of it remains impossible. Resultantly, the intangible nature of the subject matter is mirrored in the work itself.
The initial photographs are portraits made of people I either know vaguely, or do not know at all. The primary objective is to obtain a physical likeness of them, one without highly stylized lighting, but instead soft, predominantly even lighting. This first step is what allows for the stylized translation of the inner self to the object. As the most common means of identifying the individual through photography stems from the visual, to capture them as simply as possible is to lead in to this idea. The individual exists outside of the strictly physical realm, as they are more than simply a body. Rather, they exist within the intangible realm of the inner self, inaccessible by conventional means, illustrated through only abstract concepts.