For my series “Wastelands”, I wanted to highlight the scope and permanence of trash produced by various metropolitan cities. By transforming garbage into an elegant exercise of composition, form and line, the disposed waste begins to create an unusual portrait of each respective place. Through each urban center’s trash, a picture begins to take shape that reflects unique consumption patterns and habits.
By elevating these disposed materials, they become mediations on the larger global issue of excessive waste. This series is intended to be a visual critique of the crisis our planet is facing.With more and more trash accumulating in our environment, I was compelled to make a statement through my lens. My intent for this work is to resonate with viewers, raise awareness about the global trash issue, and inspire the audience to reduce their own personal consumption of trash and single-use plastics.
I chose the technique known as “knolling” – a process of arranging objects at 90-degree angles and photographing them from above. By utilizing the same set up, the same lens, the same distance, the same surface and the same collection technique, a comparable series begins to form allowing us to objectively contrast and evaluate individual cities. Not only does this create a distinctive visual language and is symmetrically pleasing to the eye, using the subject matter of disposed trash creates a powerful and urgent juxtaposition.