Zodiac Zoetrope

Compatibility Mode

In 2018, I started on a series of nudes which were purely exploratory, and they have quickly become an ongoing series titled Compatibility Mode. Compatibility Mode is a series of fine-art nudes which I have organised by the zodiac star sign of the person photographed. I’ve not been content on just exploring fine-art nudes and producing prints. I want to find a deeper meaning in my work and ultimately find a place or project for the series to ‘say something’ about me and the world around me.

Select Compatibility Mode Photos

I’ve also been looking for ways to bridge the gap of the old techniques such as double exposure film photography with modern technology. By diving down another rabbit-hole (of which I go down many) I’ve been looking to reinvent something from the old-world just so I can use the word atavism in a blog (not that it truly fits here but, I still got to use it), which brings me to the ‘Zodiac Zoetrope’.

The Zoetrope

As far back as 5000 years ago in Iran, people have been using cylinders and a series of images to create animation. Whereas then, they used earthenware bowls decorated with a series of images showing a goat jumping toward a tree and eating its leaves – fast-forward to the early 1800s, we see the invention of the zoetrope.  The zoetrope is one of several pre-film animation devices that produce the illusion of motion by displaying a sequence of drawings or photographs showing progressive phases of that motion.

A Zoetrope for the 21st Century

My Compatibility Mode and  Flora and Faunacation series’ are a perfect starting point for me to explore reinventing the zoetrope for the 21st century. The Flora and Faunacation series use multiple exposures to visualise the concept that at the end of the day, humans, plants and Earth’s inhabitants are all the same in the eyes of nature. I never considered myself an activist of any kind but the more I delve into the systems and institutions that humans have created, the more I want to tear down labels and have the human form celebrated regardless of size, age, race or gender.

The intention is to create a life-size digital zoetrope that starts slow where the viewer can clearly differentiate between male, female, thin, not-so-thin etc. and as the zoetrope speeds up, the form blends into indiscernible beauty, maybe even something sensual where the viewer doesn’t need to know who or what they are looking at and just enjoy it.

Here is a model of the concept using the power of Lego and a hot glue gun to illustrate the human-size scale of the digital zoetrope.

Collaborate With me

In this melting pot that is our world, nature sees us all the same, and I aim to photograph thousands of varied photos of all ages, shapes, sizes, races, and genders and showcase them in a way that honours nature’s impartial view. I’m not sure what the end product will look like, I think that will be determined by the photos I get, so would love your help.

If you’d like to be involved and photographed, please get in touch here.

I’m currently working from a studio at my home in Merivale, Christchurch, New Zealand but travel often so can do on-location sessions.