Thursday, August 8, 2013

Fong Qi Wei - time is a dimension

Photography is great for capturing a moment in time, but what about if you want to show its passage? Singapore-based photographer Fong Qi Wei has attempted to do exactly this with Time is a Dimension, a series of images that play with the concept of time as more than just a static moment.

Wei creates his images of landscapes, seascapes and cityscapes from a composite series of photographic sequences that span 2-4 hours, most of which are of sunrises and sunsets. As he explains:
Photography is a medium that is famous for freezing time. The word snapshot suggests that a tiny slice of time is recorded for posterity.

But we do know that time is also a dimension, like length, breadth and width. In fact, physicists have a model called space-time: suggesting that time is part of a continuum with the 3 dimensions that we are familiar with.

A photographic print is flat, and essentially is made of 2 dimensions: length and width. Yet through composition and lens focus we give a print depth, which is a dimension that is perceived but not physically part of the photographic print. Great photographs (and great paintings) give information in all three dimensions. The best images are the ones which let you feel like you can step directly into the frame into a world which is on the other side.

But the print is still an instance. Most paintings and photographs are an instance of time. That’s not the way the world works. We experience a sequence of time, and that’s why a video is somehow more compelling than a freeze frame.

I work in the confines of a photographic print, because I like to do so. But in a way, I wanted to break out of this restriction of a single slice of time in photography.
You can see more of Wei's work and read more about this series on his website.

(Via Colossal)

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