Written review by
Photoeditor New York Times International, France
In spite of a huge organization, a bride could be subject of many disturbances, being lost, and finally alone… This series try to show the contrast what be existed between a dreamed wedding and the reality. Jeremy has chosen a very different approach to photograph a wedding. he actually decided for focus his attention on a not so much analyzed aspect of this particular day: the contrast between the dream wedding and the reality. And he tried to do so focusing on the bride, and her awkward solitude in the day of her wedding, which contrasts strongly with the imaginary that we have of it: joy, partaking, being surrounded by love and loved ones.
I really like the idea of Jeremy, who set himself to go beyond the “normal and conventional representation” of weddings, to try to highlight the sometimes not so obvious dynamics in people’s minds.
Jeremy submitted 7 images, in which he shows use the bride, in her wedding gown, with her bouquet, walking by herself, in empty street. The atmosphere of the pictures is sort of surreal: nobody is walking in the streets, not even strangers, no cars are driving by, no friends or family members are around the bride. She looks lost in the streets, walking somewhere, almost looking for something. In four of the seven images that he submitted, she is seen on the phone, which accentuates the feeling that she might be lost, physically or in thoughts, or looking for somebody.
I think Jeremy has done a good job in translating the concept he had in his mind into the atmosphere he portrays in his photographs.
At the same time, I would like to see some further reflexions. I think there is more room and more ways to express his idea than simply showing the bride in the streets.
This is for 2 reasons: the contradiction between an ideal (the perfect wedding) and the reality of it, is a very complex one, that feels to me a little too simplyfied if represented simply with outdoors photographs in a street. the second reason is that, visually, the take submitted feels a bit too repetitive. The bride is photographed in different streets, but in very similar ways, from a very similar distance, full frame. Four times she is seen on the phone. Once she is photographed while crossing a street; the other six times, she is photographed on the side walk, using the buildings as background.
The photographs are well shot and composed, Jeremy knows how to frame his subject, and how too isolate her from the background, while still using it to create the atmosphere of the subject lost in the urban space. (the only not successful image for me in this regard is image number 3, where she is not framed properly, with her head overlapping a tree in the background and getting lost in the picture.)
But as a viewer I would like to see a further development in Jeremy’s idea.
If the images that Jeremy submitted are journalistically shot, in a reportage way, then I get the idea that Jeremy did not spend enough time with the bride to really develop his idea. The solitude of the bride and her mental space could be represented in other situations as well, the complete association between the outdoor space and a woman sort of lost, is maybe a bit too conventional. what about when she woke up that day and while she was getting prepared? was she alone? was she already sort of lost in her thoughts? Solitude is a mental space as much as a physical one, one can be lonely in his thoughts even when surrounded by people. I would like to see some variety in the situations, but also in the composition, in the distance from the subject, I would like to see something more of the bride, her face, her expressions, elements that help me feel her mental place more.
If, on the other hand, Jeremy was pursuing a different approach, sort of a serial approach in which he stages his subject, deciding on purpose to photograph her with a very consistent way, in the same distance, then I would encourage him to go further and push that approach more. To take control of his subject and direct her in order to visually represent what he has in mind. think this would help him find a wider variety of meaningful situations, rather than just the street to help him portray a person’s inner contradictions