Bubbles & Melanie King

Today I did more experiments with bubbles for the visual response. The task I set for myself today was to make and photograph bubbles by myself. During the process I faced some problems and had to adjust my approaches. For example, at first I used Fairy washing up liquid to make bubbles, but it made the water slightly green which was not good. So, I had to change for a transparent shower gel. I also thought the best thing would be to photograph the bubbles against a white background. For that I tried a porcelain mug, plate, and shallow bowl. Mug was OK because the distance between the surface and bottom created a shadow. Bubbles on the plate and bowl got lost in the white background.

At first I also let the bubbles be created naturally when the tap water hit the soap. However, that only created really small bubbles that weren’t suitable to photograph. To fix that, remembered how kids create bubbles by blowing through a straw in a glass. Unfortunately I didn’t have a straw, but I was able to make one by rolling a piece of paper into a tube and wrapping tape around it to keep the shape. The “paper straw” worked fine, although it got a bit soggy after a while.

Another problem that I noticed was the lighting. It was really difficult to get a perfect photograph of the bubbles because they reflected light so much. I found that the reflections distract from the shape/outline of the individual bubbles. And that shape is what I want to capture. I started thinking that maybe a solution to that would be to capture the bubbles in a photogram. I have actually never made photograms and only just learned what that even is. I have just recently seen photogram pictures on Instagram which gave me an understanding of what they look like.

I decided to look online if people have made photograms of bubbles before and what they look like. I found some and they look just like what I want to achieve. One of the pictures that popped up on Google (see below) was very interesting and was linked to an online article about an artist/photographer/printmaker called Melanie King. She has worked extensively with bubbles and what they represent and symbolize. She has used different photographic reproductions of bubbles in her work.

Nestria – Photogram, 2011 by Melanie King. Read the full article http://cargocollective.com/becausedesignmatters/INTERVIEW-Melanie-King

I visited Melaine’s website and Instagram account. I really liked the work she has done with bubbles and and also the images of her work in general. So, I followed her on Instagram and liked a coupled of her pictures. Only minutes later, I received a notification that Melanie has commented on an image that I posted of my development work today. She said that she has a book that could help me and that she could possibly meet me next week when she is in London. I was so excited when I got her messages! I couldn’t believe that my experiments and research had led to a message from the artist herself. I really hope that it will work out and I can meet her and take a look at the book she has about bubbles.

instagram melaniekatking copy
See this Instagram post online here.


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