Untitled by Mary

For Project 4, “The Unsocial Life,” the challenge was: The unsocial life: capture your solitude in a series of photos. Take pride in the time you spend being with yourself and share it.

Untitled by Mary

To see more of Mary’s work, click here.

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Beatrice: What a great series. I really get a sense of quietness and even loneliness from your photos. I’m imagining a quiet day at the house by yourself – I can picture it so well in my head. My favorite photo has got to be the one with the cactus. I just love the green against all the brown as well as the angle of the photo. The cohesiveness of your series is also great. The similar editing and theme really comes together and makes your photos collectively strong.

Stephen: I have just had a huge insight in to your personal life and to allow us to explore your space in minute focus’ is great. I like that you included a ontage of images. I had a fun thought of seeing your whole room in a wide angle frame, and being able to zoom in on the unique items that make your own space so homely. I would like to know how these photos have come about, and why these specific items. As a whole the series works really well to capture an unseen aspect that exposes the solitude and silence of your bedroom.

Amanda: I just mentioned in my critique of Jacquelyn’s project that it would be interesting to critique one another’s work without an artist statement, and here your project is! So, I’ve decided to write a critique one for you even though it is not assigned. One emotion that comes across very strongly in your collection is silence. I’m glad that you chose so many photos – if you had only selected three or four, it might just look like an assortment of shallow depth of field photos, but the collection stands strongly as a whole. I imagine these photographs flashing as the opening sequence of a television show or as a glimpse into the random objects you take interest in when you’re in someone’s bedroom for the first time. Assuming that the setting is your own bedroom, the set gives a taste of who you are as a person, but only enough to know you as an acquaintance. There are a few personal and distinct items (the shot of the necklaces is my favorite for that reason), yet there are also other items that are common (the laundry basket, the closet, the charging phone). In terms of responding to the prompt, I feel that this set makes the viewer feel like an observer instead of inviting the viewer into your perspective and your shoes. I get more of a sense of being alone as Amanda in your room, than what it might be like for you to experience solitude on your own. I’m curious to hear what your original intentions and directions were for this project!

Jacquelyn: Your photos lured me into a day in your unsocial life. I felt as though I was a hidden camera, being an invisible being in your room and trying to draw meaning from each object. What was most interesting to me was what each map, clothing, feather, or photograph represented, both in your memory and your personal interests. Without seeing an actual human being (apart from the photo of you and your friends), I was able to get to know your personality and values on an entirely insightful level.

One thought on “Untitled by Mary

  1. I love the juxtaposition of the “unsocial” life with the objects that were definitely there because of a story connected to people. So, I favored the pictures with the journal and the hand-drawn sign in the back. Who do you write about in that journal, who do you phone, who wrote that verse? I also loved the photos of the jewelry and the box with the embroidery and the feather. There are stories there and the photos make me want to know more. Obviously the “unsocial life” isn’t emotionally inactive, but filled with memories and thoughts of people you’ve known.

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