p.23 James Benning and Tiffany Branscombe



















I found James Benning’s assignment intriguing, it pushed me to isolate and tune into my senses. I loved how I did not need a plan or idea of where I should go or what I should photograph, instead, I could let my senses guide me. Step 2 and 3 were excellent in developing my knowledge of moving image and how Benning explores this medium. I understood that his work may not be to everyone’s taste as it is slow paced, unlike the abundance of exciting, action-filled movies around today.  His work also isolates the senses, for example, a lot of his work features very still landscapes with audio that the viewer pays more attention to without the eyes being distracted by movement. Therefore, this is the reason why in step 3 I chose to focus on the sounds of nature in spring. This is also shown with the blossom in the trees, only swaying slightly in the wind as to not distract the viewers from the blissful sounds of the birds singing.

Through my research, I learnt that Benning had a huge interest in time and I too wanted to explore this concept in my assignment. With my headphones on I chose to walk away from my usual journey to University and soon came to see that many people were going to and coming from a certain place. Following the crowd, I came across the station which I thought would be the perfect spot to sit and observe for at least an hour. I found it interesting that the concept of time was so different between me and those embarking on their journey. Many were in a rush trying to find their tickets and catch a train, whilst I was almost in a different world, no places to be and all the time I needed. Inspired by the style of Benning’s work, I used moving-image to capture this difference. The scene is set at the start, yet the eyes are not stimulated with movement and so the viewer is forced to intently listen to the usual sounds of the loud speaker calling out trains. The eyes are then triggered in the next scene with the relatable frenzy many experience at a train station created using a time-lapse. The viewer is also distanced from the subjects mirroring how I felt in the moment.

I found that in a public place, I was only comfortable filming and recording using my phone, however, I think I would have been told to leave if I had been using a DSLR. My phone was also useful in helping me create the time-lapse. I edited the video using Adobe Premiere Pro which meant I could put together and layer different pieces of video footage and audio together. This task definitely helped to develop my skills and confidence in video editing and Adobe Premiere Pro.

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