4: Audience: Journey as Beginning

This project uses a series of iPad images taken on car journeys in Philippines as the basis for posing questions about what is depicted in the images. These images are spontaneous snapshots taken through windows of cars and planes, glimpses of life that just happened to be there at the time rather than carefully considered documentary.

I had to use my iPad because the airline restrictions on luggage meant that I could not take both my DSLR equipment and the laptop needed for work. My iPhone was also an old one, making the iPad a better option. However using the iPad meant that the images from moving vehicles were more unpredictable – often freezing or delaying capture of what I intended and less consistent in exposure and focus than can be achieved on a DSLR. Early photos were jpgs, later ones were shot in the Lightroom Mobile Ap as dng images. Few images are of high enough resolution and technical quality to stand on their own as ‘photographs’. However some of the images are quite powerful in presenting a serendipitous, ‘raw’ outsider impression of everday life and landscapes along roads in Manila and Luzon.

This project takes inspiration from Dan Eldon’s work ‘the Journey is the Destination’, but sees the journey as the beginning of my ‘journey of arriving at some understanding.’ The images provoke many questions about the meaning of what is in the ‘shot’, leading to on-line investigation of social, economic and political issues in Philippines that give alternative interpretations that in turn can be discussed through engaging with social networks with people in Philippines. I then revisit the images examining the ways in which different types of photographic processing and presentation can affect/enhance/distort what is being communicated to provoke further questioning both for the author and the viewer.

Making the World a Better Place

The project continues my interest in different subjective and objective ‘outsider’ approaches to documentary, focusing on environmental challenges, social challenges of marginalisation and rural poverty. But – further my response to First Things Next – I am aiming for different types of outputs that fulfil different purposes: direct messaging, for different audiences linked to a broad ethical commitment. Provoking questioning from the viewer rather than imposing one single message.

I look at how my creative process, particularly documentary work, can be significantly improved through working with other people to help me to develop alternative narrative threads and visual approaches, building on some of my professional qualitative research skills.

Audience engagement

My body of work will includes ways of engaging different audiences to improve my work in terms of:

  • refining the ‘messages’ by getting a range of local views and information on social and environmental issues through conversations and interviews and engagement with relevant local social networking sites.
  • feedback on the effectiveness of the ‘communication aesthetics’ from local, national and also international overseas audiences to improve my technical and visual communication skills through ZemniImages Facebook page crosspasted to other social networks.
  • finding different marketing, promotion and advocacy outlets for the different dimensions of the body of work.
Project evolution

This body of work revisits photography series taken on journeys connected with my professional work. My 24/7 work consultancy schedule does not permit me to do in-depth photo documentaries and people do not normally have much time to give me background details unconnected with work. But I visit places and meet people that most tourists do not see.

Taking its cue from Dan Eldon’s powerful collages in ‘The Journey is the Destination’, I look instead at ‘Journeys as Beginnings’ – a visual record of glimpsed memories that I can subsequently examine and investigate further through studying secondary published and on-line resources, to produce initial drafts and then discussing with people in my on-line social networks.

I am also interested in the requirements of different formats:

  • on-line galleries
  • slideshow videos
  • photobooks

Technical skills

I am interested in the requirements of different formats:

  • on-line galleries
  • slideshow videos
  • photobooks




After Effects


4.1 Road to Cabanatuan

Initial black and white selection and editing inspired by Lee Freedlander and Robert Frank’ journeys through America in a car and Daido Moriyama’s moody black and white images of ‘Tales of Tono’ in Japan.

Black and White images


4.2 Luzon in Colour

Builds on Stephen Shore and Martin Parr. Scarfolk.

Colour images

Color photbooks

Colour documentary book

4.3 Journey in the Land of DU30

Collaged Photobook inspired by Dan Eldon and Dave Carson.

4.4 Land of DU30 the Movie

Documentary slideshow from Moving Image

Inspired by Terry Gilliam, Saul Bass and Hitchcock film techniques