Exposure: StereotypesPosted on October 10, 2013 | by Justin Lanier
I love illustrating concepts with my photos, and have been shooting everything I can for the last six years. I put my idea above all else, and just try to do my best to communicate it in a new way.
I’m intrigued by the different things we all assume about each other. My project took on two viewpoints — an empathizer and a devil’s advocate. First, I would approach strangers and ask them if they felt like they ever had things assumed about them. I would ask them to write that assumption in a defensive statement on a sign. Having them write it added a personal touch that spoke more to their defense.
I contrasted the pictures with a second set that were as close to polar opposites as I could create, shooting the second with unflattering light at night, contrasting the former shot with flattering light at sunset. I took the strangers’ defensive statements and flipped them into offensive statements others would assume about them. I wrote these out on signs of the same size as the original and took the pictures in front of people that stereotypically fit the statement, placing the sign in the frame. My hand was visibly holding the sign, providing a feeling of involvement for the viewer and hopefully causing reflection upon their participation in prejudice.