Last Monday (January 17th. 2022) we were privileged to welcome Ken Scott (ARPS, APAGB, MBPsS), with his different thought-provoking talk “All in the Mind” or as Ken called it an “An Introduction to Photosycology”. To call the session a talk doesn’t do this particular presentation justice; it was much more than that, it was both fun, interactive as well as thought provoking and the beginning of a learning experience. Ken trained as a Psychologist and became passionate about photography over 40 years ago. He became fascinated when he realised that his academic training related to the art of photography. He was able to bring his Psychology into his Photography wanting to understand such questions as-
• How and why, do we see what we see and why do we see these things differently
• How and why do we respond to photographs in a particular way
The initial premise is that Photography is a representation of what we see and we see an image through our own eyes/minds and filters. We also have barriers to seeing objects and images (too much data = overload if we were to take it all in), we make judgements as to what is interesting or important.
If, when we go out to take photographs and we go with a mind to take a specific type of photograph and we fail to find that image we will have missed lots of other opportunities. We would have conditioned ourselves to only look for a particular composition and if we don’t find it then we end up disappointed. Ken doesnt go to a location with the sole purpose of taking a particular photograph.
Photography is about an experience and you “feel” the moment and make memories. If one of our images has captured that moment then when we look at that image some time later we will immediately be able to “feel” that experience again. That works well for our images viewed by ourselves but we need to find a way of having others look at our images and feel or identify our experience. Not an easy thing to achieve.
During this first half we were introduced to several thought provoking and interesting concepts including –
1 – Forms and shapes that are relaxing
2 – leading lines that draw us
3 – barriers that stop us
4 – colours that influence us – Red is hot and passionate whereas Orange is warm and yellow cheerful, blue cold
5 – white borders on a print that appear to darken the image
6 – large borders on a digital image can have a detrimental effect – small strokes don’t.
In the second half Ken continued to teach and encourage us to participate –
Themes we covered included–
1 – Perception – and recognising emotion in people – faces allow you to connect and the eye is the window to the soul.
2 – Expressions – include anger, rage, happiness suspicion and pride – all easily identified through facial expressions
3 – Symbols – offer perceptions and meanings for example. A picture of keys in a door – does this offer freedom when the door opens or safety and comfort when closed
5 – We can identify who we are by objects.
6 – How we see ourselves and are perceived by others
The above is just a short summary of some of the areas Ken covered. What made this talk so fascinating was the way that the whole group (on zoom) was able to interact. Probably one of the most fun, interactive, different and challenging sessions we have enjoyed over the last 20 month whilst using Zoom.
An excellent evening thank you Ken