Wednesday, 11 November 2015


    In this essay I will be reviewing and comparing the work of two different artists from two different rooms in the Tate Modern. The first Artist I have picked is George Condo, born in American in 1957. His work really stuck out as being expressive and free reign, something that is interesting to me and would like to reflect in my personal work in photography. I particularly like his use of figuration as a contrast to this. I'll be reviewing his 'Study For Red Head works 2,3,4,5.
    I will also be looking at Rebecca Horn. She was born in Germany in 1944 and works in Germany and France. I find her work conceptually interesting, she portrays strong themes of expression, rhythm, and can connect emotionally with her subject. She says 'the pencils make the marks on the wall: their image corresponds to the rhythm of my movements.'
The two artists George Condo and Rebecca Horne share the ability to see beyond the normal, connecting with their work, and the viewer.

    Firstly I will be comparing the work of these artists. The first piece by Condo is Study For Red Head 5 (2004). It depicts a female subject, ink on paper. The work could be interpreted to say she was being possessed; she looks like she is on fire. She had one eye, a demon like mouth and long sharp pointed fingers. The way this has been drawn shows clearly the emotional connection between Condo and the subject. He draws in a style that shows how he feels, seeing behind the physical form of the female body, inside, who she really is. It shows themes of anger, expression and torture.
    I will be comparing this work to Rebecca Horn’s Cockatoo Mask (1973). It is a sculpture from Feathers, metal and fabric. The contrast between the materials used is an oxymoron. Feather and fabric are delicate materials that may represent love and affection. The metal is solid, hard and contrasting to the other materials. Similarly, in Condos work, he shows the natural figure of the female body in contradiction to the evil features and the aggressive style it has been drawn in. Both artists are playing with opposites, depicting a subject in a non-conventional way in order to make the viewer interpret the feelings of the artist. Both show female subjects and both have links to aggression, the way the Horns Cockatoo Mask covers the female face, leaving her unbranded, unidentifiable, leaves the viewer lost, or restructures their typical perception of the subject. I enjoy the work, as it is interpretable. Its not portrait, its expressive, the work doesn’t just come from seeing, its an experience of the Artists life, it connects us to both sides of the story, it leaves the viewer asking question like ‘what does it say about the emotional connection of the artist and subject.’ In Horns work we can see that theme of love and intimacy. The way the Cockatoo Mask is performed tells us that the Horn wants to show intimacy of a female; the piece is performed beautifully and elegantly. The viewer is supposed to notice the sexual themes, they way the feathers open up when connected to another person shows an emotional connection. However the way they are left slightly open afterwards shows a negative side. The aggression compared to the tenderness. The mask is actually forcing the subject to stay intimately alone. Even though stimulated from another person the mask forces you to stick with yourself and not stray away. This theme of aggression is powerful and could be described selfish. It communicated that Horn wants to us to understand our self-power and how we should have a stronger connection ourselves. 

    This can be compared to George Condos Study for Red Head 3. It shows a female subject sitting alone, naked in a chair. Instead of the subject being drawn or painted sexualised, to perfect standard, it has been made to look like a demon. The work wants us to make a connection with the female form however we are being restricted by the ghostly, haunted style of the work. The sharp angles show themes of anger. In a portrait the natural curves would have been shown, they may have been drawn like this by Condo to reflect his anger at the subject. Condo says ‘When we abstract in imagistic terms from a recognisable from -lets say a face- to an impression of a face, we can still recall the impression of a face somewhere within this abstraction.’ He is saying that when we are abstracting the subject, we are able to still make a connection with the person. Us as humans are able to read the style of the work, the way the subject is depicted and come to conclusions about who the subject is, are they a good person, have they made mistakes. It leaves us thinking about who and why.
    This can be compared to Rebecca Horns ‘Pencil Mask.’ The mask can almost be called a tool to help express the work of George Condo. The mask has pencils attached to it and the user of it can move their head to create marks on the wall.
    A difference in these works is that whilst Horn uses motion and direct connection to the head/mind of the user of the mask, Condo uses what he sees and feels through drawing with his hand. Horn’s is a performance, a direct connection to your feeling and thoughts through your head to the paper. Condos is still as emotionally significant, it’s just the methods of portraying them is different. One works in sculpture and the other works 2D with pen and ink. Both mediums are strong ways of visually showing the themes of love and anger. Sculpture and 3D performance are a good way of showing emotion as you can physically make a connection with the object if you experiencing the piece first hand or if you’re watching you can emotionally attach to the subjects.
     Rebecca Horns work ‘Overflowing Blood Machine’ (1970) is different to the works of George Condo’s Study For Red Head 2 (2004). Horns work is a 3D piece in which a subject lays on top. Red tubes flow down portraying blood. ‘The performer is tied down on top of a glass container; tubes are wrapped around his body. Blood is slowly pumped from the glass container through the plastic tubes. This garment of veins encases his body, wrapping him in pulsating skin.’  The work is showing the importance of the blood flowing through our bodies, the importance of us. This is contrasting to Condo’s work. Condo shows an extremely broken, flat, ink and colour expressionistic drawing of a person/cartoon. The work tells us about the subject, who they are by the way it was been drawn. It features strange circles, tubes, starts, bits of cartoon bone. It is showing a ‘crazy’ depiction of who we are, our ability to become free and be whoever we want to be. This is different to how Horn’s work is quite inclusive, quite self contained. Condos drawing is clearly showing expansion of who we are whilst Horn is saying be who you are, Condo is saying you can be whatever you want to be. The use of colour in Condo’s illustration is important as it gives hints of being expressive, colourful, and playful. Horns work does not do this, it doesn’t allow the person featured as the subject of the work to expand, the net of veins is containing the person and making them stuck to who they are rather than letting them expand beyond who they are.

Another difference is between Horns Cockatoo Mask and Condos last piece in his abstract, figurative series. He has a colour drawing of a blue mouse with a large moustache. This piece is a little off the series and doesn’t features many similar themes to the rest of his work. The Cockatoo Mask is an emotional piece about love, and danger. Condo’s drawing is showing themes of imagination. I say this due to the odd colour used and the
un-textured surface of the animal. It has been painted in a non-realistic way. This isn’t shown in the performance piece.

To conclude, the exhibition was extremely useful in seeing different ways of working. It’s opened me to appreciate different working mediums to communicate similar feeling, themes and emotions. George Condo and Rebecca Horn have both successfully managed to communicate strong contradictions in their work that leave the viewer open to analysis.  They both use subjects in order to communicate their own feelings. They work in different styles and use different materials however they can speak directly to the viewer in the same way. Both artists show two sides to a story, distorting our usual views on reality, making us see deeper into a piece of art than ever before. I believe that the works of these artists are more comparable and similar due to the themes and methods of communication used rather than the difference of medium and performance/viewing experience. The similarities overweigh the differences.

Monday, 2 November 2015


On our fourth and final 2 week course we started to look at film, we started by looking at the key sections and stages of film production such as: shooting, scripts, camera angles and shot types, cast etc we also started to look at what makes a film such as a moral premise, a moral premise is a short synopsis of a film that enables you to understand that film in only a few words, for example: greed leads to loneliness. we then did a few takes that enabled us to get a better understanding on how moral premise works. we then continued to learn about the key features that make up a film and also how to make our film more professional for example; we started to learn about archetypes and how to incorporate extreme principals in our film. learning about this helped me a great deal as i could include this when doing my own pre production.

Image result for camera degree rulesWe then started learning more about pre production planning such as: storyboard and the degree rules for camera work, we then began to think about how we are going to use these for our planning so we got ourselves into a group and began to develop our ideas where we then decided on a moral premise of: greed and recklessness can lead to severe consequences we then mapped out a storyboard and began to develop from there.

On the first monday back we began to start shooting our film, we started by planning who was playing which part once we knew this we made our way to Brick Lane where we started shooting, we had already done a location recce on this before hand so we new where we was going to film. we then started to set up filming and started shooting, we knew what to shoot because we were following the storyboard as well as the shot types and camera angles, we also started to think about what sounds we would incorporate in our film as we wanted to have a comical side to it so we decided on using amusing sounds to give a little more of a comical side to it. When we had shot all the scenes we headed back to uni to start editing it together and including sounds to make it give more emotion for the viewers and just to amplify some shots as the sounds were too quiet. we had to incorporate a chase sequence in our film so we decided to have me and my girlfriend walk to buy sweets of a sweet dealer however i give the dealer fake money and we are then chased by the gangsters and my girlfriend is shot by a water gun. 

we took inspiration from a film called 'Bugsy Malone' which is a film about children who play gangsters and they have guns that shoot custard we tried to base our film on this in the aspect of a comical yet serious short film as we feel this would be interesting for our target audience which was a group of 18 year olds.

  Image result for bugzy malone film

We then started to add sounds into our film that would show the comical side of it, we also pitched our idea so we could get some constructive criticism and improve areas of our film, the feedback gave us some things to think about which we then added to our film to make it better. On the final day we had to present our film to everyone else, we went first and we got some quite positive feedback as people were able to identify the moral premise and also which character was which so i feel like we did a good job and i have defiantly furthered my knowledge in filming/editing, however we also got some criticism which was not to have such a cliche, this is something we have taken on board and am able to start thinking about in the future.


On the monday we had been told that we were going to have a two week induction to animation, animation is something I've never looked at before so i was interested to see what it was all about, we kicked it off by watching a few different types of animations created over the years, for example 'Honda Paper' this was a 2D stop motion animation video, we also watch a colour cell animation called 'Procrastination' after having looked at these types of animation i started to get an understanding of animation and how it works.
we were then set the task to create our own animation, so we got ourselves in to groups and began to plan story ideas for our animation.

The next day we continued to develop our story ideas when we then told the rest of the class our ideas this allowed us to get feedback so we could then improve the faults in our story, doing this helped us advance and take our story to the next step which was creating story boards so we could map out the stages in our animation and also what camera angles we will use as well as scenery etc.
For my directed study day i started to play around with stop motion animation at home just on a first basis, this allowed me to understand how to edit an animation together. I used clay figures and just played around with basic movements this also allowed me to understand how the movement of characters is done in animation.

The next day each group was asked to present their story and features for their animation. some of the other groups had ideas that inspired me to improve the story boards to make our story that bit better. we then spoke to Chris who gave us some ideas that we could include into our animation to improve it such as the ending. I then went on to helping Conor with the blender facial rigging / phoneme this is where i started to understand animation a lot more and was getting a better understanding on how to make one

On the first Monday back we again continued to develop out animation even further by getting story boards up to scratch, i then started to plan the angles we were going to use in the animation. i also started to do research by looking at other animations and animating companies such as pixar this gave me an understanding of characters and what a professional animation looks like.

Image result for pixar

founded by: Alvy Ray Smith, Edwin Catmul and Steve Jobs

The next day we presented our first draft animation to Chris for feedback on our idea and what we could do to improve it the feedback we received was very helpful as it allowed us to identify the strong points in our animation but also the weak points which needed improvement. On the final day we had our presentations we were given a short amount of time at the start of the day which we used to our advantage to improve any small problems in our animation such as some editing alterations, we started by watching a few others animations which i found very useful as it allowed me to see what we could have done as some of the techniques used in other peoples were really good. We then presented our animation and was then given feedback which was fair and also allowed me to think about how i could improve my animating skills.

sound design

We started the project by looking at the most important factors of sound design such as diegetic sounds and non diegetic sounds and soundtrack architecture. this information was very useful to me as i have never studied sound design before therefore getting an understanding to what it entails was very useful.  we then started to look at some examples of 'Bladerunner' and 'The Conversation'.

After we looked at these video i was able to start to identify how you can use sound to create emotion, and how if played over a film you can create emotion without having to see it, we then started to record sound effects or ambient sound noise using a tab cam audio recorder, i found this to be very useful as i have never used this sort of technology before and i had some very nice sounds after using it.

The next day we continued the basics of sound design to get a better understanding, we then started to do some sound recording to start playing around with sounds and getting the basic techniques and learning this had a big contribution to my final sound journey.
we were then given a brief tutorial on how to use Adobe Audition this is for a more advance look on sound design and is not something i would use for my sound journey however it did give me a few tips on how to make your sound piece that much better.
I then began to make a start on my sound journey on Final Cut Pro this software allowed me to put the sounds in the order that allowed me to show how emotions have changed throughout the sound piece, when i started to edit my piece i began to develop my skills and get a better understanding of the whole process which i could then add to the second part of the task.

Sound To Film

Sound Journey

On monday i applied some finishing touches to my sound journey making sure that i had made it clear what emotions i was trying to show.
in my sound journey i wanted to show how my emotions changed from when i got home for collage to when i started to skateboard, i included the close up sounds of the skateboard as these sounds have great deal of meaning to me and they can change my emotions.

I then started to do research on films that i could use for my video sound journey, where i would play sound over the film clip to show different emotion.
i decided to use a film that meant a great deal to me which was: 'All This Mayhem' this film included a lot of skating which is something i thought i could show emotion with as it means a great deal to me. i then began to replace the soundtrack of a clip from the film with sounds i thought represented the emotions i felt when skating for example the adrenaline you get when skating i decided to use a engine of a car to reflect this.

Image result for all this mayhem

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

intro to blogger


My name is Harry O'Donoughue, I'm 18 years of age and I live in bromley South in Kent on a regular weekend I enjoy going out with my friends to events and clubs. I also have a passion for skating and the skatepark and I like to link my work to this. I have started at Ravensbourne to continue learning about photography and media, I chose to do a foundation course as I was unsure what specific course I wanted to take further as it was between photography and media I have been studiing these subjects throughout a level and I ended up with a double distinction in BTEC media and a B at photography a-level.

In my spare time I enjoy skating and I feel as if this is a big part of my life as I do include it in my studio I do this by making short films and taking photos of people at the skatepark to highlight the tricks they do and to show what skating means to people.

This is something really enjoy doing as its a passion as well as a hobby so it makes working on it a lot more fun as well as also getting some really nice outcomes of photos and small videos I do using 'final cut'.

I was hoping to develop my skills at Ravensbourne using the resources to my advantage and hopefully coming out with a project that I'm proud of, just by the first day I could tell that this was the place where I could take my skills further and start creating a project.

Thursday, 10 September 2015


On the first day we were given a project title of identity and we then shown some examples of identity in photography, this interested me as it started to give me some ideas on what I could do.
We were then set a task to present what identity means and what is identity, when discussing this it became more clear to me what identity actually was as it's not just one thing but so many different things making up you as a person, this started to give me more ideas for my project.

On the second day we spent a day in London visiting various galleries. We started at the VnA where one particular piece grabbed my attention as shown

This particular piece interested me very much as it shows an paintings in different boxes within the piece, these paintings included paintings of: St John, St Luke and events such as: St George is dragged by horses. It was generally believed that the piece was probably made for the 'Chapel of the Confraternity of the Centinar de la Ploma' this interested me very much as without cameras this is how artists would show their work, unfortunately the artist of this piece is unknown and was not shown in the exhibit, however the information that was given was: Spain (Valencia), Tempera and gliding on pine and the museum number was: 1217-1864.
This piece was presented on a huge scale which was one of the reasons it grabbed my attention so much, and the fact it includes names such as St John and how these where all painted into this piece, as if this was done in current time a camera would be used and to think how much time went into this piece changed the way i looked at it.

We also visited other galleries such as: the serpentine gallery, national photographers gallery and finally the Tate modern, however the pieces displayed in other galleries did not interest me that much however looking at so many different pieces began to give me an idea on what identity meant to me.
when we were walking round all the galleries looking at all the different pieces i started to notice that everything can link to your identity for example:

This photo on the left was from the VnA gallery also and it shows religion. This piece was called the 'White Tara' and it was widely worshipped in Nepal and to me this showed just how important this object was to certain people thus showing that it is a part of there identity through religion. then as we continued to look around galleries i started to believe that there are a lot of things that are a part of your identity, not just a few things but a huge collection of things whether it is: religion, culture, the hobby's you do or even the things that interest you all these things pay a contributing factor to your identity.

After visiting the galleries i started to think of all the different things that make up my identity however there were a few things in particular that i wanted to highlight the most important being skating. as skating is such a big part of my life it is what i wanted to show in my project as it says a lot about my life as its what i am always doing and there are so many factors within skating that make me, me. For example its what i base most of my work on and I'm always travelling to different places and meeting new people from it and its made me who i am today.

To do this I selected 5 objects I think represent my identity the best, as you can see below i have chosen 5 different objects, each of these objects have a meaning to me and my identity.

This is my first object that i have chosen to use. this is a necklace that i have had since i was very young the 3 charms on the necklace all resemble something different to me, the first charm which is a christian cross i was given this at an early age to show that i am a christian, the second charm is a surf board that i bought when i went to Australia for 1 year when i was 6. The third and final charm is a metal guitar pick that my dad gave to me, and it was given to him by Eric clapton, all in all i would say this object resembles memory.

This is the second object i have chosen, and as you can see it is a  train ticket, i chose this to represent travelling as i am always travelling whether its by car,plane or train to me this is a big part of my identity as i have been travelling around the country and out of the country for various skating events and just in general to get out rather than staying in. i think that this is a big part of my identity as it shows what type of person i am, as id rather be out and about than stuck indoors

These are my headphones and i have chosen these to represent my identity as i am always listening to music everywhere i go. i feel these represent music which is a big part of my life as i listen to a lot of music wherever i go whether its whilst I'm just at home. i would defiantly say headphones link to my identity as music is a part of my life

This is the fourth object i have chosen to represent my identity, this is my camera. i have a DSLR as well as this 'Go Pro' camera however this is the camera i mostly film on as it is small and easy to carry around. I feel as this is a good object to represent my identity i am always filming and editing my own videos whether its on skating on just making videos for the fun of it, i feel this is defiantly part of my identity as i love to do it and its something i can defiantly see myself doing in the future.

This is my fifth object i have chosen to represent my identity. this is a festival band and its one of many that i have, i defiantly feel that this object is a part of my identity as i love music and i have had some of the best memories at festivals probably moments that i will remember for the rest of my life, this is why i have included it.

I started to look at the artist Sarah Deragon. She is an artist from San Francisco who is showing in her project that people label other people due to there gender and sexuality, she says: 'this project seeks to explore the labels we choose to identify with when defining our gender and sexuality'. Her work interested me very much as i also believe that people are labelled if they are gay or female and they are judged on stereotypes given to them. This elaborates on identity as its what other people think about your identity just because of who you are, for example being gay, people expect you to be a certain type of person which is wrong.

I then started to look at a photographer called Sam Ashley and he photographs skating, i found his work by looking at skating magazines but the one in particular that had his work on the front cover was 'Sidewalk' skate magazine, I then started to research him and found out that he mostly photographs skaters in the streets of London finding new spots and then photographing them. i enjoyed his work because i do a lot of my skating in London so i could relate to the photos and i even recognised some of the spots in the photos.

This is my final object, this is object has a lot of meaning behind it as it is a part of my first skateboard. although it does not look like much to me this object has a lot of sentimental value as to me its when i started skating which now is such a big part of my life. i feel that this is a big part of my identity as i have been doing it for so long and its what i spend most of my time doing, therefore i have added it to represent my identity.

 After looking at Sam Ashley's work i started to think about what i wanted to photograph, and then i had an idea to show in a photo a piece of my identity for example this is a part from my first skateboard shown in the photo above, and i have then included London where i used to skate in the foreground. As you can see from above i have then chosen an object to take further as it is such a big part of my identity i took this photo in hope to show it as my identity, i set up the photo with the part from my first skateboard in the foreground in focus, however i positioned the part slightly further left as i was trying nit to attract to much attention to it. The reason i did not want to attract to much attention to it is so that some of the viewers attention is on the background which is London (Canary Wolf), this is somewhere i used to skate with my friends as it has some good street spots that me and my friends would enjoy skating and it is somewhere we would go quite often, what i am trying to show in this photo is as skating is such a big part of my identity as i spend most of my time doing it and my life revolves around it in my free time i have tried to show that by having the part of my first skateboard in focus. However i also tried to show a location where i skate often by having it blurred in the background.

This is a photo taken by Abigail rose and is showing the movement of this person using long exposure, long exposure is done by increasing the shutter speed on your camera to capture stationary images while blurring the object or in this case person, long exposure is something i would like to introduce to my my photos.

These are two images I took, when taking these images I used long exposure, i had the shutter speed at 5 seconds and i also had a strobe light set up to capture each of the skateboards movements as seen above. I had the strobe light set up in the dark room so that the light would expose the skateboard in different stages of movement. I did he same process for both of the images above. This linked to my project identity as it includes a hobby that i spend most of my days doing.

These are my final 5 images, as you can see from above i included macro shots as well as some close ups to show more detail on the skateboard. i used these particular images as they show a place where i skated a s a child as well as my first skateboard in the picture, i thought that this would show the viewer a place that means something to me as it has history and a lot of worth to me as it is where me and my friends would meet to skate.