When one hears the word “photography” it calls to mind a whole host of things: cameras, lenses, rolls of film, prints, computers, editing software. When reviewing the work of Maggie Taylor, that is not the case. I thoroughly enjoy her use of scanning materials into her computer in order to make an image. Her website contains multiple pages including an Alice in Wonderland inspired collection entitled “Almost Alice”. I was immediately drawn to Taylor’s work for this reason alone. Almost all of Taylor’s work contains fantastical imagery that seems out of this world and incomprehensible to real life situations and the “Almost Alice” collection is no exception. Her work truly captures the essence of the original Alice in Wonderland and has the fairytale quality that belongs in a storybook.
As for the rest of Taylor’s work, some of it contains an almost attainable quality, that is to say that the situations and people portrayed are relatable. For example she presents us with these images:
There is nothing unrealistic about a woman wading waste deep in a body of water, at least not for someone who has never lived more than five minutes from a beach, and anyone who has ever had their basement flooded knows what this woman is going through. As for the photo of the men, it also has that attainable quality, as if to say that I could go out into my backyard, take some materials and create dwellings and stand next to them. These aren’t images that are out of the question.
With that said, the final bits of Taylor’s collection contains the unattainable. The whimsical, just for fun images that if someone wanted to recreate by way of a real photographed image, they’d have to physically make an effort to take the photos and then go to town on Photoshop or another photo editing program. Taylor presents us with these images:
The fact that Taylor scans in her materials in order to create her images means that she can do whatever she wants to them. She can think of something and make it happen piece by piece. That is one of the things I love most about her work. She has minimal restrictions because her work is not your typical, everyday photography. If she wants an image where a birthday girl is her own birthday balloon, she can make that happen, as depicted above. While I can do that too, I must remember that I am currently a digital photo student and I need to take that into account when making my images. Taylor’s work really makes me think about what I can do, and the restrictive walls I need to break down when I make my own images. Her work makes me think that in the world of photography, anything is possible.
To see the rest of Maggie Taylor’s work visit her website by clicking here: http://www.maggietaylor.com/
As always, I am RJ and this is just another thing to think about…