We had a group discussion session and concerns were aired about the project not having enough gravitas due to the subjects that have been used being models, also the issue that the images are very contrived.
The images were deliberately stark in their make up as I was wanting to strip away any signs of personality. Likewise the subjects were shot in a very stark studio setup so that all the viewer would focus upon was the body language of the sitter.
I have explored a number of avenues to try and get involved with people with Postnatal Depression(PND), but it is proving to be extremely difficult.
I have contacted a number of Mother and Toddler groups in Lincoln in the hope that someone may come forward. I think it would actually be better to converse with someone who has gone through the condition some time ago rather than someone who is going through the trauma at the moment. I have therefore put out a request for anyone who has suffered, any age group or generation to come forward if they feel they can. There is very little information on PND prior to recent years but it must have been present in times gone by, something our mothers and grandmothers may have suffered to some degree. Something not acknowledged or discussed perhaps. I think having gone through it and come out the other end it would be slightly easier to talk about.
I had been in contacted with the PND unit in Lincoln a number of weeks ago and at first they were extremely reluctant to even discuss what went on there. They were naturally very protective of the women who attended sessions there and initially felt that any contact with the women involved would be impossible. The lady in charge however has been very helpful with information regarding the condition and has agreed to let me film a session with her later on this week and discuss some new information they have been issued with regarding the condition and subsequent treatment of it. She has also indicated that there may be someone that may after all be willing to talk to me. I won't get too excited by this yet as it is only a possibility!
Rob and Ros suggested that if I cannot get women to film or photograph it may be an idea to try and photograph more abstract images. Less obvious but related images so I'm looking into that at the moment as well.
Another route I am going to look at it is conversing with women through network sites such as the PND Facebook sites. Ideally it would be great to be able to have ongoing discussions and maybe try and get them to post some photographs. Having never used facebook before it will be yet something else I will have to get some lessons on.
At the moment it is frustrating as I am desperate to get ahead with the project and take photographs but I don't know how things are going to pan out. I think with my next project it would be very wise to avoid any human involvement at all!