Photography: Jonathan Knowles and Tom Barnes (UK) Push Boundaries of Normalcy

These British photographers work to pay homage to the wilder side of our lives

Human beings are naturally inclined to altering their state of consciousness. Since the dawn of human existence, there has always existed in one form or another a way in which to unwind, relax, and enter a different plane of existence. From psychedelic hallucinogens to alcoholic beverages, a myriad of different products have existed for thousands of years that have allowed humans to take a break from the onslaught of information and stress to be something else entirely. And these photographers revel in that storied history with their newest works.
Tom Barnes’ series, Oh What a Day! (ABOVE) is a kaleidoscopic view into the world of the other. Part Burning Man and part Mad Max, Barnes’ work relishes the otherworldly, creating a view into a culture that exists on the fringes of society. From the leather-clad wildmen to the pixie-like dressed women, Barnes’ campaign is one that is both enticing and yet wholly arresting.
Jonathan Knowles seemingly more conventional and advertisement-based photograph for POWERS Whiskey (ABOVE) alludes to the power of libations. The Irish whiskey is posited as being so delicious, so powerful, and so barrel-busting that it is literally retouched to look as such. The barrel that ages the whiskey is simply not enough to contain the excitement and energy of POWERS Whiskey. It’s an interesting take on alcoholic advertising, one that certainly points to humanity’s insistent love of booze.
Be sure to submit your work to Graphis’ Annual Photography Competition before time runs out! The deadline is November 27. Winners will have the opportunity to see their work published on our website, blog, newsletter, and social media platforms.