Imogen Watt Exposure Post 3 Visual Developments

October 8, 2017by imogenwattExposureRoyal Engineers Museum and Archive (17/18)Uncategorized

Imogen Watt Exposure Post 3 Visual Developments My concept for this project is to create a timeline demonstrating the changing works of the Royal Engineers over the years.  I want to create a timeline of images, that are montaged and merged together digitally to create one long panoramic style image. My aims are to make the final piece as seamless as possible, meaning the separate images become one collective demonstrating that different roles the engineers have had over the years. I started to look through the archive and discovered that through the 1800’s, the imagery they had was mainly portraiture of the engineers and soldiers. The type of images then changed as they entered the 1900’s to images of the Engineers out in action and on expeditions, they were less staged and more realistic of the roles they played in the military. The images in the archive are you scanned in straight from the books in which they are found. Due to this I then had to crop and edit them down to just the images that I wanted,   I wanted to remove all the spare pictures, the borders, and the text in order to merge them together as seamlessly as possible. After editing them down to the image that I wanted, I started to experiment with merging them into one and other using photoshop. I started in chronological order, starting from the 1800’s and the portraits. Although I liked the portraits of the engineers as individual images, and the way that they represent the beginnings of photography, it was nearly impossible to merge them in a seamless way. Due to the settings and who the images are staged, it was always clear that they were separate images. This is not the way I wanted the work to look, I also found that the portraits didn’t really tell a story, there was no way to know who the men were, the work they were doing or the roles they played within the Royal Engineers. More problems arose with the portraits when I tried to continue the timeline to the 1900’s. In this time, the photographs of the engineers became more out in the field. They showed them on expeditions and in action, I found they were a more realistic interpretation of what the Royal Engineers did and  still do. However the change in settings and types of imagery made it near impossible to merge them with the portraits of the 1800’s. From these practices, I knew that It wasn’t going to be possible to create a timeline combining the portraits and the 1900’s shot. I decided in order to make the timeline more seamless and effective, that I would start at the 1904 image and leave out the portraits. There was simply too much of a jump between the portraiture and the other images, and it would be impossible to get the affect that I want using all of the images I found in the archive. With this in mind I started to experiment combining the 1900’s too 2007 images to try and create a more affective timeline, and get the effect of one seamless image. I found it was now working much more easily as a collective, the images were merging together more effectively and it was beginning to look more like one long image. I found that the images from 1904-1982 were working well together, not only montaging well, but demonstrating the varying environment that the Royal Engineers have had to work in over the years. However I was having problems with the final two  images in the sequence. They didn’t fit well with the selection of other images and they seemed to be an abrupt end to the timeline. Due to this I wanted to head back into the archive and find new photographs that would have a more complete feel, and that merged easier than the two  I previously had.