I finally had a chance to see tutor and without any surprises he loved the idea of crashing funerals, photographing coffins and blend in with the mourning crowd.
I started to panic and look at this seriously. I got my feedback in the next couple of weeks and there was a few serious suggestions:
- Difficult project – sensitive handling
- Initial stage – contact hospices
- Urgent need to contact hospices and other relevant sources in order to understand if the project is doable.
- The practice of photographing the dead was very common in the 19th Century.
- Research include post-mortem photography, memorial, portraits, mourning portraits and momento mori.
- Photograph the effort put in to dress up and prepare bodies in order to seem realistic.
- Use your own experiences and cultural differences.
- Opinions, interviews, artist interviews and emails.
- People to look at – Bill Viola, Walter Schels, Colin Gray, Sally Man, Joel Peter Witkin, Beate Lakotta and others.
- Write a project proposal
- Consider photographing terminally ill people.
I knew that the first step is to make a list of hospices, charities and organisations that deal with terminally ill, give support to the family of these people and basically is the main focus point to reach target – photograph funerals and pre-dying photographs.