It seems the hectic week has engulfed my sense of time and I somehow discovered today was Friday just now...hence the delay.
This is a commission from the arts council website I have been doing in Sheffield for about 3 weeks. The deadline is tight and it has been hard work but rewarding. The images aren't quite strong enough yet but they seem to be very chuffed there is a still a few more shoots to do.
I took this project on for a number of reasons. It is completely different to any project/commission I have ever undertaken. All subjects are what is considered 'elderly' and the project is looking at old age and how these women feel about it.
When I read this brief I imagined the client wanted 'happy' 'smiley' snaps of women having a laugh but to my relief what they really wanted was just to capture these women...for who they are and show them as real people. They feel that women within a certain age gap are shown in either two extreme ways within the media...a) The beautiful celebrities that have botox and surgery to maintain their youthful look.. or b) the vulnerable, helpless and delicate elderly women sitting in wheelchairs in their homes. They wanted to see some different imagery, something that reflects the personalities of these women.
I decided to split the project into many parts, for me the most imperative aim ( to their delight) was for all the women involved to have fun. I am chuffed to say that in the few weeks I have been spending with them, on walks, in their homes, on location and at the pub with a G&T I feel that they trust me and that we really have a laugh.
This project really has reminded me that if anything as you get older you get younger because these women have no fear of making fools of themselves and having a bloody good laugh..( give 5 women in their 70's a wheelbarrow, sit back and watch the scene unfold)...
I am grateful to Clare, Rosie and Naomi the organizers, Toby my assistant ( and Mark for the sofa) and of course the ladies for really taking to the project and trusting me.