Stef Parkinson

Not quite reality


When looking through the camera there is something quite surreal about what is being viewed, it changes from when you look at it with the naked eye, it’s not quite real. It’s almost as though it represents the process of when something becomes manipulated by someone else’s mind.


As an artist I’m very much interested in the use of human imagination. I love the freedom and the lack of boundaries there are with exploring the subject of the imaginary. There is something quite fascinating about contrasting this idea with a subject that was designed to document facts. The foundations of my inspiration lie with the first photographers. Imprinting traces of light onto light sensitive material, painting with light. It is this idea of painting with light that excites me. Unlike a painter a photographer has to use what is in front of them to represent their imagination,  it is this which bridges the gap between reality and the imaginary.

butter (2)

At my time in university I have experimented a lot in the darkroom, trying to find ways to manipulate images so that they looked like I had actually taken an image directly from my mind. I wanted to create images that were more believable than an image that had been obviously changed on Photoshop. People are aware of photo manipulation on Photoshop now but less people know about darkroom techniques, which create questions for the viewer. Now I no longer have the same access to darkroom facilities I have started to look more into the digital side of photography, I merge the two media together to create hybrid images that give me even more freedom to explore the world of my imagination.


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