Simon Sweeney | Surface & Strategies: Strategies of Looking

Surface & Strategies: Strategies of Looking

June 03, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

Strategies of Looking

My project is somewhat new in England. Showing what the effects of light pollution has to our dark skies in England, by using a time-Lapse as a means. I know my methods and strategy are not new. This method and strategy has been implemented before by Sriram Murali in America and my cinematic approach using panning and sliders are certainly not new.

Repeating, re-photographing and re-enacting are already natural occurring throughout my project. I was just unaware that there was a dedicated terminology for this genre, nonetheless My time line of events deliberately took me to specific areas of interest, where Re-photography has already occurred. Not in the context of re-photographing a photo in the same area. I have researched certain images taken beforehand and was using this to scope out the area to see if it was applicable for me to practice a Time Lapse.  When the weather window was open, I would be able to repeat the process for my desired outcome.

An example of this is from photographer Phil Durkin’s Ferry Bridge night photograph that won the BBC’s photography competition in 2014. This photograph has been taken numerous times before Durkin’s attempt, therefore he still has Re-photographed this composition.

Credits to Phil Durkin

For me this will fall into repeat and re-photographed, as I will be revisiting and shooting this venue when the time is right. I learnt so much from this session. I will no longer implement a lateral slide or use panning but a horizontal push. Strangely it may seem, I’ll also be using a low ND filter (yes at night). Even at F22, ISO 100 I couldn’t achieve a long enough shutter to gain the light trails I wanted. I want my shutter speed to be as long as possible to be able to continue the streaks of light throughout the S bend and continue the motion for the time-lapse.


Re-enacting an event or idea is also occurring. Not so much in the contextualization or re-enacting of a past historical events like Eddie Adams: Street Execution of a Vietcong, 1068.

and the re-enactment of Yasumasa Morimura’s Vietnam War, 1968, 1991.



I’ll personally will be re-enacting Sriram Murali’s Lost in light. He has an elevated view over an illuminated city showing the light pollution. Therefore, I have researched areas where I can also gain a high advantage point over cities to gain a similarity or re-enact of his composition. I have found an area to overlook Wakefield city center from Sandal Castle. The one I am looking forward to the must, is an elevated view over London. The Shard and the Sky Garden are on my hit list. 


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