Sunday, May 18, 2008

Jon Edwards' Haunted Visions

I was perusing my love for you is a stampede of horses when I came across the spooky, surreal work of a young Canadian photographer, Jon Edwards. Jon is just 18 years old – still in high school – which is amazing. Even more astonishing is that these haunting Polaroids are not photoshopped. All of his effects are achieved organically, by double exposure, scanning during the developing process and heat treatment, as well as slide projections of Polaroids that were boiled just after being ejected from the camera.

Here's a look into his process from an interview he gave to Of Uncool a couple of days ago. Jon is very articulate and I don't think I'd be able to add much of value to his insights, so I'll just let his words and images carry themselves to you.

"I mostly like to be on my own. I've found that self-portraiture is one of the most convenient ways I can convey an idea. I always use a Spectra system and build up a confident relationship with the camera before the picture can be ready to release. I try to complete the image before this release and disfavor the use of any subsequent alterations unless it's the stove. Double exposure is my favourite choice. I use a digital projector and a mirror to help me. I'm interested in assemblages and unification. I hate to be straightforward."

Jon says his photographic impulse was "something caused by the absence of feeling. Preserving life because I don't know how to feel. I had the idea that I might one day be able to, if I spend the time looking."

"Recently the cray parts were littered along the bike path again, but I didn't have the time to gather as many as I need. It's sometimes sad to hold onto them because I have to see the colour fade away. I found the most magnificent blues that I would want as my skin. They grow greyer with each look."

"I'm trying to find what's in my head and it might take a few tries before it appears. It's getting steadier."

"People think of double exposure as such a random process, but it makes sense if you really understand how it works."

"Sleep loss theme exists in all present images… Somehow in childhood I came to think of sleep as a weakness. Always said with pride that I'm never tired. There's that vulnerability associated with sleeping. I still fear it."

"I strive for a certain degree of ambiguity. I offer fragments of ideas and don't often complete the sentences. That's to say I think there is a lot to be gathered. I hope to at least provide a gripping force."

More of Jon Edwards' work can be enjoyed at his portfolio page and his Livejournal page.


jon edwards said...
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commandax said...

Wow, that was fast.

Corrected, thank you!

m.o. said...

Thanks for posting this. I came across his work the other day, good to have some background. Great.