Selecting creative artists has many facts. It’s easy because we have so many of them, but on the other hand, it’s hard to find the best and emerge them on the surface. The story begins when Stephen left a comment on my photo called “Maybe she’s born with it.”, fortunately my habit is to check out everyone’s photostream, especially when somebody is interested in my work and wrote a feedback. That’s how Stephen‘s work came to me and after a few hours I decided to send an email with questions, meet to know.
Stephen Morris currently lives in London, studying in his final year of Product Design at Central St Martins College. He uses a he bought off from eBay and has more recently added a small camera strobe setup that he rarely uses. Stephen doesn’t have vast sums of money to spend on kit so he just tries and gets creative with what he has.
To me photography is something I do for fun. I never think too much about my concepts, they normally just arrive when God thinks my mind needs a break from whats going on in the world!
Playing around is fun and I rarely have a predetermined image in my mind before I start shooting. If I do the final shot normally comes out really bad!
Stephen was first introduced to manual photography when his grandfather gave him his old 35mm SLR, nearly 10 years ago. He was no longer able to get out of the house and use it so he generously gave it to Stephen. He was a great man who past away last year. Stephen is forever thankful for the many different ways his grandfather blessed his life. Stephen feels his photography is a continual reminder of that.
I still feel very new to photography and I doubt I can really give any good advice but the one thing I can share is that photography is as much about the process as it is about the final result. If you can find a way to enjoy the process the results will look after themselves.
He shot this a couple of years ago in a bedroom, he was renting in London. At the time Stephen had just bought his first DSLR and was just playing around with it.
I had no great intentions or thoughts about what I was shooting.
Stephen just put all the shots he took on his computer and combined a couple in photoshop. At that time he doesn’t know what he was doing, but playing around is always the best way to discover and learn new things.
For That Hard To Reach Place
This was shot a few years later in the same house. A new housemate was moving in and Stephen gave their room a new coat of paint. The house is a big old terrace in North Kensington and the room was well overdue a splash of paint. He has been painting by himself for a couple of days and everyone knows that painting is fun for the first day but after that gets incredibly boring.
I would say the majority of my photography is born out of bordom. If necessity is the mother of invention then bordom is the father of creativity!
Stephen decided to take a break and shoot some photos in this new, completely white, space. The only props he had in the room were a ladder and a chair… so this is what he came up with. After posting it on Flickr people kept mentioning Sam Taylor Wood’s work. He checked it out and was pretty annoyed that his idea wasn’t very original.
I’ve since resigned myself to the fact that ; the process is where all the fun is to be had anyway!
The Master and Her Dog
This is a portrait of Stephen and his pet, dog Button. He shot it in the backgarden of his parents new house, soon after they moved in and had a new lawn laid. The camera was just resting on the ground propped up on the lens hood. In order to get his face in focus Stephen put his socks where his head was going to be and pre focused the camera on that point. Hence why he has no socks.
I’ve never used a remote and focusing is always an issue when using a self-timer. It took me a few attempts to get this right and I nearly landed on Button a couple of times. I’ve since done another couple of head stand shots but this time in a bath with water in. That took a little more organisation though.
A similar thing happened to the Sam Taylor Wood incident when Stephen posted it on Flickr with people making him aware of the work of Chinese artist Le Wei.
I think the similarities between our work end there though as I’m not quite as mental as he is and no where near as good!
A Mans Work is Never Done
Stephen has friends who live on a beautiful farm in Derbyshire and it has become the setting for quite a few of his images. He grew up in the countryside and much prefers it to the city so he’ll take any excuses to escape for a while. This picture proved to be quite a challenge but still took no more than 10 minutes to take. As he mentioned previously, so this had to be done on a 10 second self timer.
I put the lawn mower into place first then came back to set the camera up. I found a decaying tripod in one of the barns and propped it up, hoping it wouldn’t fall over and distory my camera while i was on the roof. I then hit the shutter and ran up the roof, pulling the lawn mower round into position just in time for the shutter.
One Day My Bed Will No Longer Be Mine
The secret to this shot is revealed when you flip it over 180 degrees. Taken in the same room as ‘Flip’. Stephen shot this last year while procrastinating from a paper he was meant to be writing. For a while he had tried to find a way to attach his camera to the ceiling above his bed but always failed. Stephen then realised he could move the bed instead. By propping it up against a wall he was then able to simply jump off the floor to try and create a sense of hight and depth.
I think it could have been executed a lot better than it was but that’s the same way I feel about most of my work.
The latest project Stephen has been working on is with a charity who work with orphans and street children in India. During the summer of 2009 he got invited out to India to photograph the work they are doing out there and it was an inspiring trip. With the images he designed a 2010 wall calendar that the charity is now selling to help fund further work (www.dalit.co.uk).
Good luck Stephen and share your future creativity with us.
Jan 29 by Danijel