Bird #2 (2022)

In response to the bird-based ‘whirligig’ prompt of The Kick-About #54, I set myself the ambition of photographing the movement of a flapping bird in the confines of my house, in the knowledge that a) I didn’t have a bird and b) birds are difficult to manage as the subject of a photographic shoot! For sometime now, I’ve been rather preoccupied with the transformative effects of long exposure photography, so taking some of this experience forward, I built a cardboard ‘bird shape’ from packing boxes (imagine a confection of wing-shapes slotted together in a vague cruciform construction), sprayed it white and blue, then tied it onto a length of white elastic. What followed was largely comical, as said ‘bird-shape’ was made to swing from one side of the room to the other, or ping through the air like something launched from a catapult. That said, the combination of time, light and movement is nothing if not transforming, and very soon I understood I did indeed have the semblance of a ‘thing with feathers’ – and perhaps a little more than this in some of the most successful images. More to follow.

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