These images form part of a series of amateur 35mm colour slides purchased in bulk from an online auction site combined with images taken on a digital point-and-shoot camera I found in a skip. I've always loved found images; every photograph retains some of its owner's reasons for shooting it, and the idea behind this project was to transform everyday images through combining them with a modern - albeit defective - medium. Images are titled with the filename from the digital file plus slide type/annotations.
When buying the slides I had little idea of their content or quality; the listing was simply advertised as "American Amateur Vacation slides 1955-1997". Most were unusable due to surface damage through poor storage or simply out of focus. The vast majority were relatively banal, the typical stuff of tourists documenting their travels in the US, but almost every slide was shot on Ektachrome or Kodachrome, two now defunct films but whose legacy has informed almost every photographer working in the 20th century. Certain images, whether through accident or technical nous, evoked that traditional notion of American frontier spirit: the open road shot through the window of a vehicle; huge, unmistakably Detroit-built cars, the wilderness alongside the highway. Many are catalogued on the reverse: "Royal Gorge Bridge, Sep. 76", "YMCA BLDG/MAIN ST/SAN. D." "PLAZA SANTA FE 11-91 NM."
A cheap pink Panasonic, on the memory card were around a dozen amateurly-composed images of, presumably, the camera's previous owner. It became clear why it had been discarded: it would only shoot in black and white mode, with flash, on a 3 second exposure, resulting in profoundly abstract images. I experimented with the limited options the camera afforded, taking around 50 shots over a few days of family members, our flat, a night-out with my wife. The camera died soon after, but the images it produced were fascinating; huge streaks of light, the visible pixels almost painterly, msot recognisable features buried under layers of digital glitches.
This project is a response to the limitations of digital imagery versus the tangible qualities of film, a medium that continues to influence my own photographic practice.