Extended Image Final Installation: Return My Love



The series deals with a topic that I feel strongly for and am passionate to discuss. Hence, it is based off both personal experience and my observations of the situations around me. It originated from this strong frustration over the behaviour of the female friends in my life that gave away a lot of their future and potential for a relationship that was not worth it in the end.

I struggled to understand their reasons and motivations behind their behaviour. This project pushed me to look more into the situation and understand the reasons behind why this was happening. The title ‘Return My Love’ calls to these females to reclaim the control and power that has been given away, and for them to return their love to themselves.

Working Process

The photo series chronicles the struggle for balance between dependence and independence within a relationship. Within the photos, the message is told through composition and the subject’s emotion.

The girl is the focus of the images. The guy is always framed out of shot and we never see his face or expression. He is the one in power and is the influence on the girl’s emotions and behaviour.

During the process of coming up with this series of images, I first thought of the words associated with the theme that i was tackling:










I did plan out a shot list of the shots i envisioned for some words, and for others, it was an instinctive process during the shoot where I would improvise and execute what naturally came to mind. The shots that i ended up comprise of organic poses based off personal experiences.

Artist References / Moodboard


I referenced the photographic works of Nan Goldin’s The Ballad of Sexual Dependency (1985) . I was drawn to the raw look and feel of that series, which represented the drug and sex culture of that era clearly and accurately. The themes of dependency within relationships was also one that resonated with me while thinking about my own topic.

The rest of my mood board consists of film stills from movies like Hou Hsiao Hsien’s Three times (2005) and Wong Kar Wai’s Days of Being Wild (1990). I felt that these stills were very intimate, which was brought out through the character’s emotions and the composition and lighting choices.

Those were factors which i tried to emulate within my photo series to get my message across without being to direct, which hopefully allowed the viewer to develop their own interpretations of each photo.



The Oceanic / Current Convening Strategies

We recently visited The Oceanic at Gillman Barracks, a collaboration with NTU CCA which presented artworks inspired by the complexities of the Pacific Ocean. During my visit there, I saw installations that made use of various approaches to get their message across, and will talk about the 3 that inspired me the most in this post.

Strategy 1: Space

In this particular installation, artist Newell Harry presents his research of the traditions of the Kula Ring with the use of anagrams, photo series, and objects. The placement of the above components are clean and well done, with the anagrams places on the wall opposite the photo series. The main space is saved for display of the objects, which were well lit with spotlights and seated on a raised platform. This arrangement of elements in the installation allowed for the focus to be evenly spread across the artworks and highlighted each piece adequately. My main takeaway from this installation is the even division and use of the given space. As I forsee myself possibly extending my work beyond the video format, I could take notes from this installation and it’s even distribution of space.

Strategy 2: Lighting & Projection Method 

In this installation, Tue Greenfort presents his view of technology and it’s relationship with sustaining life in the ocean. He makes use of a projection of a video about the ocean floor on a piece of frosted glass, coupled with a circular aquarium with jellyfish, submerged in a never ending rotation of water. What first drew me to this installation was the intense coloured lighting which was shined into the tank.

However, what really caught my attention was the video projection. I loved that it was projected onto a non-conventional screen, the frosted glass panel. The use of the glass material ties in with the glass aquarium and gives the entire installation a visual cohesiveness. As I would be doing a video-based installation, the projection method would be something crucial to think about as it can add meaning and aesthetic value to the artwork.

Strategy 3: Sound & Moving Image 

In this installation, viewers are presented with a single screen and a set of headphones. It is a very minimalistic and simple installation, but it was really effective in delivering it’s message. I was able to focus on the video and the headphones helped to isolate the sound. The one takeaway from this installation is the possibility of translating my message through a single linear channel. Screening through a TV set is also another organic way of projection.