Josie O’Neal-Odom

A Study of Isolation

Class of: 2023

Major: Illustration BFA

Medium: Photography

Faculty: Tamar Samir

Prompt: The purpose of this assignment was to practice conceptual thinking and executing a photo shoot based on current events.

The purpose of this assignment was to practice conceptual thinking and executing a photoshoot. I found this to be an especially exciting challenge given the circumstances and limited resources at my disposal due to COVID-19. The photoshoot that I executed was based upon the current climate of our world surrounding the spreading virus. I specifically wanted to focus on the subject of quarantine and social distancing and how that has affected people’s mental health. I personally have been struggling with feeling alone even though I am luckily quarantined with my family. I have heard from friends, family, and strangers that their mental health has declined significantly due to being alone and feeling helpless about the state of the world. I knew I wanted the atmosphere and mood of the photos to be cramped and feel almost claustrophobic to reflect this. For the lighting, I wanted it to resemble the way your eyes initially react when being in the light after a long time of darkness. For instance, when you’ve been in the house all day and finally walk outside it takes time for your eyes to adjust and your vision is slightly distorted for that short period of time. I used water on the lens of my phone camera in order to create the blurring effect. I wanted the model, my lovely mother, to be dressed comfortably and casually in a manner that is common among people that are now stuck in their homes for a while. With the photos I took, I mainly wanted to express a feeling that would be familiar to anyone who is currently being affected by the pandemic.