Decisions on Old images



On one the first decisions I have to make during my process is how to display the images of my father.

In the last year I have played around with using the old images as a base as part of rephotography but it struck an odd note to me. I tried various ways. Some of it with a hard bordered old image stuck in the middle of the new contemporary image and some with a softer feathered border on the old image, giving it a more spooky effect.  There was something that was always missing.

It took a while before I realised what the issue was.


When I compared the images of my father with the images that I took I realised the difference. The fact is that my father took the images in what he saw as the perfect time. Furthermore, the images are hard to improve on as they froze a time and a place, something I will struggle to recreate.


It took me a while to look at different photographers and how they chose to do the rephotography examples.


Looking at Sarah Davidmann’s images I understand why she chose the images she did, why she highlighted the images she did. My story is a gentler one though, with heavy nostalgia instead of the forgotten shame that Davidmann  (Sara Davidmann, 2010) illustrates so well.  My representation of the images can therefore not be the same.



Ken. To Be Destroyed by Sarah Davidmann

Playing around with the images I finally settled on one of two options. Since I will be publishing a book I have the ability to include both images in one page. At first I wanted to use my new image as the full page image with a side inset of the old image. When looking critically at the images I realised that the new images just don’t hold up to the old images. As the old images have more weight to them and have a bigger impact the newer images look like snapshots. Even though the images on their own are not weak they pale in comparison to the original images. As such I then decided to put change the images around and make the original image the big image on the page and the small image the inset.


Sara Davidmann (2010) Ken. To Be Destroyed [Online] Available at http:// [Accessed 15 February 2020]


Old Images


My father has a large number of old images.  Some of them are really lovely black and white images that I would love to include. My biggest issue is the wording that goes with it. To spoil the fun the idea would actually be bullshit the headings and give something false instead. Would that be too on the nose. Would it be ok or should I do it. How false can I go. At the moment I want to put in the one of two people with stalactites that the two individuals in the photo ended up opening a series of sex shops. It would have been a juvenile joke that my dad would have enjoyed but should I do it?  The jury is still out.

Photographing Books


My dad was a collector of books and the oldest book I have of him is from 1685.  It is worth almost nothing but it is an interesting thing nonetheless.  Now how to include the books. I have looked at Lebanese photographer Akram Zaatari for a few ideas (Maggia, 2010). In his work Book of Letters from Friends and Family he takes photos of the different letters and and pages he received from friends and family.  His photography of the books is interesting  as he shows the insides of the books as well as the cover.   This is something I can use for photographing the book collection. It is especially interesting to see  his photos of his letters. This might lead me to think about including my dads official documents like his Death certificate, his gun license, his drivers license and his ID Booklet.

Akram Zataari

I am reasonably unsure about what to include when we look at his documents. Would it be too much to include his death certficate. This is so much a part of the story should I include it?  I am still unsure.

Maggia, F (2010) Contemporary Photography from the Middle East and Africa. 1st ed. Milan: Skira Editore S.p.A. (2020) Akram Zataari [Online] Available at http:// [Accessed 20 February 2020]





It has become clearer to me that I am embarking on a typological set here and all the different things and objects that I have been photographed will be better seen n a typological context. As such I need to look at different types of typology to make sure that I plan and do it correct. Looking around I have come across and article on Medium by Paul Davis  (Davis, 2017).  He describes some common characteristics in typology mainly Intention, Consistency and Execution  (Davis, 2017). By shooting the images the same I am forcing a relationship between objects that don’t necessarily exist.   This has given me a few ideas on how to proceed with my photography. Looking at Taryn Simon's work (, 2010)  I can see this relationship beyond the obvious but also in the visual presentation of the objects.

I am going to have to clearly aim in creating a certain relationship between the items by giving the objects visual connections. That means that there has to be a consistency in the images.  This also means that I am going to have to reshoot some of my images again where there is not the right colour temparature between images due to different backgrounds or choice of lights and softbox. It is clear to me that I am going to have to be a lot more deliberate in my photography than just taking some random stuff.


Davis, P. (2017) Can the photographic typology be defined?, Medium. [Blog] 01/04/2017. Available at http:// [Accessed 08/05/2020]. (2010) [Online] Available at http:// [Accessed 20/05/2020]








I have been thinking a lot about presentation in the last few weeks.   The presentation in the book is one thing but I have to also look at presentation in other formats, mainly that of a print.  Looking at Taryn Simon  (, 2010) has helped me somewhot. She groups her images into different sections where the relationships between the images are strong, wether it is subject based or sometimes colour based.   Her work called Contraband is very interesting to me and is arguably the closest to what I want to do with my work. Although looking at the Brechers, Martin Schoeller and James Reynolds have helped I do think that Simon’s work is the closest to my own at this point in time. (2010) [Online] Available at http:// [Accessed 20/05/2020]




Contraband,, 2010

Presentation part II


I have been looking at my images and have decided that I would like to place them in big blocks.   There is a neatness and completeness to this that just seemingly works for me. I have looked at Susan Hiller’s work (, 2010) and in her work she puts her images together in a a very tight format. In her work Journey to the Land of Tarahumares   (, 2010).the images are all very tightly packed, the eye almost seeing them all as one.  The main part of these images as that they must be seen as a whole, something I don’t necessarily want in my images.  It will be better to put them slightly wider apart, giving each of the objects time and room to exist on their own.  Hiller's work seem to be able to create an image between them, the whole bigger than the sum of the parts. Like Bernd and Hilla Becher's work my individual images are still points of interest and although part of the larger collective they will be best seen individually and not as a whole. Presentation of Guns


I have been reassessing how I want my rifles to be displayed in my images. So Far I have thought about putting them together as single images. Looking at Taryn Simons work and especially her exhibitions I do think the rifles will lose their impact if I make them one single image. Instead I have decided to break them up into three or four images. That will mean that they will  be stretched out over four images. It makes it not only more interesting but more appealing and also says more about the fractional patriarchal quality of the theme. (2010) Rough Seas [Online] Available at http:// [Accessed 25/05/2020] (2010) Journey To Lake Tarahumaras [Online] Available at http:// [Accessed 25/05/2020]



Rough Seas,

Presentation of Guns


I have been reassessing how I want my rifles to be displayed in my images. So Far I have thought about putting them together as single images. Looking at Taryn Simons work and especially her exhibitions I do think the rifles will lose their impact if I make them one single image. Instead I have decided to break them up into three or four images. That will mean that they will  be stretched out over four images. It makes it not only more interesting but more appealing and also says more about the fractional patriarchal quality of the theme. Trying to look closer at the different images that portray guns there are two extremes. Most of them feature the owner of the gun heavily.  In Lindsay McCrum's images from her book Chicks with Guns (, 2011) the relationship between the owner and the object is very important. As such the owner are also posed in a place where both her and her weapong of choice is enhanced, the police offier above the crowded city, the skeet shooter in an open field. It is both utilitarian in its framing as well as exculplatory, their gun ownership declared as natural and part of their being.

Chicks with Guns, Lindsay McCrum 2001


I am struggling to find other people that have exhibited the guns and rifles in the same format as me. As such I am once again looking at Taryn Simon's work and how she breaks things up and display them in lines. This might be the best answer to my problem. I will have to break the rifles up into three or four images that I can display seperately from each other. (2011) Photo 'Shoot': Girls with Guns [Online] Available at http:// [Accessed 13/10/2011] (2010) [Online] Available at http:// [Accessed 20/05/2020]


Foreword and Timeline


Over the last few months I have had to think of various way to open my book. My foreword was never eally going to be sufficient to understand the larger concept and history of the south afric.  I therefore tried to get someone to do a foreword for the book. Asking various academics didnt completely work as there was always issues with their availability and my own schedule. After asking a close friend to do who is also and academic and who has basically got the same background as I have to do it I thought I basicaly solved the problem but finding out very close to my due date that he decided that he couldnt do it suddenly became a problem.  I decided to do two things to try and fix that. I firstly moved my own text that i have written to the front of the book and then created a timeline to do a short explanation of the varoius things that have happened in South Africa and how that would have affected my fathers generation. The idea behind this is the old explanation that a butterfly flapping his wings causes a hurricane on the other side of the globe. Like this decisions taken in europe more than a century before my father was born set his generation up for the series of terrible decisions they were to ultimately make.



After sourcing various printing houses I have decided to go with a big printing company called Burble. They mostly do calenders and photobooks for people but they do have the ability to cater for larger books and also more pages than you would expect in a normal photobook. At the moment my photobook has 54 pages so I need to make sure that the book is presented right. I have also decided to use their biggest book available which is a 30cm square book. Since I have always had a square book in mind this suited me perfectly





I have also realized that the pure white book cover that I have oringallly designed is not strong enough to put in the cover of the book. I have therefore decided to change the book to black cover with small images from the book on the cover with it. I am still not completely happy with it but with a deadline looming I have decided to go with the old movie-editors mantra of "good enough is sometimes sufficient".




Final Print Received


I have now received my final printed book. I am quite relieved with the result.  There are a few things I might have to look at in the future though. I have realized that i do not actually have any page numbers in the whole book. Although this is not a train smash its a big of a dumb thing to do. I am currently considering have at least 20 magazines printed of the same book for just slightly more than the price of the one hard cover book and will have to fix that for the magazine. I have also realized that my text is way too big. This might have come in the upscaling process from my original 20x20cm planning to the 30x30cm print. It is also not a train smash but definitely something I would fix in future prints.


I am currently making a list of different people, national and international, that I can send my book too.  If I can get any work from any of these people in the future it will be worth the little bit of money I am spending on it.




Full Magazine: