26 by 26

Last year I followed with interest the 52 by 52 project which was conceived and curated by David Gillett, a designer from the South West of England, I felt a little intimidated so did not join in this challenge which ended in August last year. The next stage of this started on 7th March and I have decided to participate.

“26 by 26 is a year-long series of photo-challenges set by renowned photographers. Every two weeks a new challenge is issued and group members are invited to interpret it by submitting a photo to a Flickr Group.

The project follows on from the success of 52 by 52 which attracted some of the world’s leading contemporary photographers including Edward Burtynsky, Nadav Kander, Simon Norfolk, Terry O’Neill, Martin Parr and Alec Soth.
26 by 26 aims to stretch its members creatively, encouraging experimentation in terms of approach as well as aesthetics.”

Challenge 1    Take a subject as far out of context as possible.— Andrew Zuckerman

Noted filmmaker and photographer, Andrew Zuckerman, utilizes a multitude of platforms to produce work that is systematically executed, conceptually based, and democratically presented. Minimalist in nature, Zuckerman aims to create atmospheres of clarity and neutrality to facilitate the viewer’s access to the material.

Zuckerman studied at the International Center of Photography before going on to receive his BFA from the School of Visual Arts. He first made his mark on the publishing world with the 2007 release of CREATURE, a compendium of intimate animal portraits set against Zuckerman’s signature white background. He has since explored this distinctive approach – which divorces subjects from their context and equalizes the larger conversation between them – in four additional critically acclaimed multi-media projects: WISDOM (2008), BIRD (2009), MUSIC (2010), and FLOWER (2012).  (www.andrewzuckerman.com)

I decided to take the route of a flower with this high key lighting. My thought behind this one was that by just shooting the daffodil on it’s own in this way and also by it being withered it is out of context. Normally we associate beauty in flowers with them being healthy, in colour and not taken on their own.


Challenge 2     Photograph an image which exemplifies the essence of altruistic behavior.— Steve McCurry

Steve McCurry has been a one of the most iconic voices in contemporary photography for more than 30 years, with scores of magazine and book covers, over a dozen books, and countless exhibitions around the world to his name.

McCurry has created stunning images over six continents and countless countries, his work spans conflicts, vanishing cultures, ancient traditions and contemporary culture alike – yet always retains the human element that made his celebrated image of the Afghan Girl such a powerful image.  (stevemccurry.com)

I started of here by looking at the dictionary definition of altruism, which was:

“the principle or practice of unselfish concern for or devotion to the welfare of others, it is a traditional virtue in many cultures and a core aspect of various religious traditions, though the concept of “others” toward whom concern should be directed can vary among cultures and religions. Altruism or selflessness is the opposite of selfishness.”

I know there are plenty of people begging in London, so I could have traveled into town to take a shot, but it did not feel right to me to do this, I wanted to do something more “me”.  I was totally struggling with any ideas for this until this Sunday when I noticed my daughter helping her young cousin complete her Easter Egg hunt map. She had no motive other than love and wanting her cousin to complete the hunt too, so that she too would receive an egg for finishing. It may not be as powerful as the images taken by Steve McCurry as the subject is no where near as dramatic or raw, but I feel quite happy with these given where I live and in the time frame given (two weeks).

Easter Egg hunt

A helping hand

Let me know what you think, I would love to hear if you feel I have met the first two challenges or not?

LIVE, LAUGH, LOVE – enjoying and recording the everyday moments of life.