I have already made written notes for the main points I want to include within the essay and want to cover ‘The Portrait’, but with special reference to images of the elderly. I realised that soon after starting my practical project, that this is something not well covered within photography. People are almost uncomfortable with confronting issues of ageing, although within the confines of the family it is wonderful to be able to capture that precious moment with an elderly relative who may not be there for much longer.
I previously came across the work of Phillip Toledano (b.1968) in my course research for another module, and whilst this is an emotional coverage of time he spent with his dying father; it shows the special loving relationship they both shared. I personally feel that it must have been very challenging for him to take the images at times.
This YouTube film shows more of the images taken from his book Days with my Father (2010).
Whilst this is a serious study of the elderly looking towards at the end of life, as I want to investigate and discuss ‘The Portrait’ and faces in particular, I also need to look at work that has been covered in different photographic genres to ascertain how the treatment of the face has changed over time.