Assignment People Unaware

Even though I haven't blogged about it yet, I went to see an exhibition of Martin Parr in Paris, about how he sees Paris. His images were all a bit of the same, a sort of cynical look on the standard ideas that one has from Paris. Lots of colours in the pictures and a sense of humour made them interesting to look at, but I wasn't very impressed. But more on that in a later post!

Anyway, after my week in Paris, I had a few days in Dubai left, the combination being a round ticket that I had won at a tombola. So when I went to Dubai, I decided to do something very touristic, organised and that showed something of the 'Arab' culture. A desert drive and dinner at a camp sounded like a good idea!

There were a few things I tried to focus on with this assignment in mind. Technically, to get a good combination of different focal lengths and compose the shots accordingly to the effect the focal lengths give. From a narrative point of view I wanted to show how elements of a 'culture' are at display for tourists, and how this display and accumulation of it is experienced and captured. 

When cultural elements are blown up and put in a sort of theme park environment, it gets a bit of a cheesy atmosphere. I wanted to show the 'over the top' cultural elements of Arab desert culture, how the tourists take part in these elements, and the reality of the desert and the people who work there contrasted with the 'culture' at work. Here are the contact sheets of my first selection:

In the next posts, I'll explain my other selections and make a final one.