Exercise 2.3: Typologies

For this exercise we have to read an article from Guardian about “New Topographics” and watch a video about Lewis Baltz work. Then we have to write our own response to the work of any of the photographers mentioned in the article and describe our thoughts on typographical approaches.

In the typographical approaches the photographer takes photographs of similar subjects using the same techniques. Those photos are more effective when presented in the same digital image or placed together in an exhibition.

I will discuss the work of Donovan Wylie. I has searched and found the following link https://pro.magnumphotos.com/Package/29YL535PA8CQ#/SearchResult&ALID=29YL535PA8CQ&VBID=24PVHEXTKCX3&POPUPIID=29YL535TGI5G&POPUPPN=80

I am familiar with his work from previous researches. I do not remember when exactly though. You have to be more careful looking at the first 40 photos and look at the details like the numbers on the left to be sure you look at different photos. They are so similar, look almost like the same photo. In addition, the photos of the rooms are really interesting. Same point of view. It possibly helps that the rooms have the same design (due the building nature). Here the differences are more obvious. No confusion that it is the same photo. But still it gives us the same feeling. We notice the difference in the colour of the walls, some slightly damaged or dirty walls, different curtains and small difference in the positioning of the beddings.

I do not agree that this type of photography is boring as described in the article and that nobody likes it. I like it!!!

I think the photos are good, but what make them more interesting and powerful is looking at many of them, not one by one. I always believe in the power of working in a series of photos. Being so strict on applying the technique makes it even better.  

My thoughts in typological approaches are similar to my opinion about Wylie’s work. Sometimes it is nice to look at subjects most people will ignore. Even if they are not, what is considered by most people as interesting. Then, if we revisit these subjects and make a series of them, we are expressing our feelings and our view in a more powerful way. Sometimes, it can be effective even if we are not so strictly apply the same point of view but keep the same feeling in the photos (like in the work of Andreas Gursky).


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