Thursday, 17 February 2011

PRAYER BEFORE BIRTH by Jack Stewart

PRAYER BEFORE BIRTH by Jack Stewart

The advertisement said that pregnant women were required for a photographic project. I wrote in response saying that clearly I was not what the guy wanted but would he photograph me anyway. The reply came back "You are exactly what I want". Jack was then in the second year of a Photography degree course at Middlesex University. We met there and I had what was one of the most enjoyable shoots.

The idea for the shoot was based on the poem "Prayer before Birth" by Louis MacNeice.


I am not yet born; O hear me.
Let not the bloodsucking bat or the rat or the stoat or the club-footed ghoul come near me.

I am not yet born, console me.
I fear that the human race may with tall walls wall me, with strong drugs dope me, with wise lies lure me, on black racks rack me, in blood-baths roll me.


He wanted me to curl up naked in foetal position in large piece of red gauze material to replicate a womb. Then he asked me to stand in a shallow pool and hold a balloon full of red dyed water against my stomach and to pierce it with a pin as he clicked the shutter. God, it was cold but thrilling too.

JACK
Jack is a very serious, studious person who has a clear idea of what he wants to achieve in a photograph and he went about the task with care and thought but during the shoot we talked about his ideas and it felt like a real collaboration. I was elated because the images are wonderful and certainly amongst my favourites.

 Jack has produced a wonderful book on the project which I am sure would be available to anyone who is interested in buying it.

BLOOD by Jack Stewart

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