We were tasked with forming an alphabet using pictures of things we find around Bournemouth. The challenge meant that taking pictures of things that are already letters such as signs, or road markings weren’t allowed so we had to scout the environment for anything that was iconic of a letter in the alphabet.
For the letters I was trying to go for less obvious things that would look like letters, and tried to avoid setting up situations. In some cases I made slight adjustments to things I saw in order to force the letters. When taking the photos, I didn’t want to deviate too far from my normal life, I wanted everything I found to fit in around me and my student life. For example, a lot of the letters were found in my flat as thats where I spend a lot of my time, and some were found while I was out skating. I wanted my alphabet to be representative of me, my life as a student/digital media designer, and my interests.
As I don’t have a camera to use here in Bournemouth, I resorted to the one on my phone. I liked using my phone for this as it allowed me to fit the search for letters into just a normal day, without being encumbered by a large camera. I used the square photo option on my phone for multiple reasons. Firstly, I wanted all the pictures to be uniform, a consistency across my alphabet so they fit together nicely as a set. This meant I didn’t allow myself to edit the pictures afterwards, with cropping or colour adjustment, forcing me to think about composition and making sure that the letters are clear in each picture. Secondly it fit nicely with my obsession of Instagram which uses square photographs. There were a lot of missed opportunities for pictures of things that where iconic of letters as I didn’t like the concept of taking pictures in public places and people giving me weird looks for being so fascinated by fence. This exercise made me look at my surroundings very differently, constantly looking for things that had potential to be letters through selective cropping with the camera.
Below is a gallery of the letters I find and will be updating it as i find more.
Whilst I enjoy photography and taking pictures of cool things, this task didn’t really interest me and I won’t endeavour to finish my alphabet. It was a useful exercise to sharpen my skills as an amateur photographer and will defiantly impact my composition in the future.