Blair McTaggart

Photographer / Art & Content Director

blair@blairmctaggart.com

Remix Magazine Exhibition Interview.

What is your background in photography? ie. did you study or are you self-taught? Who have you assisted/learnt from? How long have you been shooting?:

 

“Find something you love to do and you'll never have to work a day in your life. “ and for me that something is photography & creating compelling images.

In 2010 I decided to pursue my love of photography and increase my exposure to photographic techniques by studying towards a Bachelor of Design and Visual Arts majoring in Photography. After more than a decade working in a ‘soulless’ corporate environment I truly appreciate being the master of my own destiny and having the opportunity to spend my life doing something that I love. Photography has real meaning for me and hopefully the viewer gets a sense of this when viewing my work.  Where I really started to learn what being a Photographer meant was by assisting a number of professional photographers working across a variety of fields, from product shoots through to covers of fashion magazines, as well as an ongoing commitment to my own personal projects.

 

Tell us about your aesthetic? What is your photography style?:

 

I am discovering this more as I continue to develop and learn but I am leaning towards creating more of a narrative, which may be sensual, provocative, shocking, exotic, surrealistic, and sometimes sinister — and then associate it with a fashion, product or message. The main influences for me have always been the works of Helmut Newton, Guy Bourdin and Richard Avedon.

 

Do you prefer shooting in studio or on location? Why?:

 

I enjoy both and it is completely dependent on the look and style of the brief. At this stage of my career I am keen to do as many different types of shoot as possible whether Fashion, Beauty, Art, Documentary or something else so long as it enables me to continue to learn and develop by gaining exposure to new and interesting facets of photography.

 

Tell us about the shots you will be exhibiting?:

 

Whilst studying I began working with a group of performing artists including dancers and actors. This work is from my most recent collaboration with some of those emerging and established practitioners.

 

The work is called Demi God Half Human, for which the choreographer Shani Dickins, recently won the Wallace Arts Emerging Artist Award.

The concept behind the images is based partially on the following excerpt to describe the dance work   “Fellow homo sapiens, the pinnacle of your success is a civilised appearance. Play human. Avoid taboo. Shed the primordial skin. You know these rules. Why are we suppressing our inherent desires?

From there I wanted to create a juxtaposition between the subjects and the location, being a partially burnt down derelict house, covered in graffiti, a fairly unwelcoming place provided the contrast between urban and human. The dancers were styled with a pseudo- glamour, fashion feel again contrasting the feral background, slowly unveiling, showing more and more skin as the shoot progressed until finally naked – human.