Photographer seeks funding for unique subscription offer

Documenting the city: Dylan Smyth. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

Documenting the city: Dylan Smyth. Picture: Max Mason-Hubers

NEWCASTLE photographer Dylan Smyth has launched a crowdfunding campaign to enable him to continue documenting the changing face of Newcastle through his esoteric, somewhat experimental photography style.

Smyth was the coordinator of 2hrsnorth, a photographic project documenting 23 Newcastle suburbs shot by 13 photographers in 2014. The final result was publication of 12 small books that were sold widely at markets and other outlets.

He also won the photomedia division of the Newcastle Emerging Artist Prize this year.

Smyth’s crowdfunding campaign, through pozible, aims to raise $4000 to produce two original photo editions of Newcastle a year, beginning with the first edition in December.

“I am selling it as a commitment between me and the buyer,” he says. “They know they will get two editions [for a subscription], but they have no idea what it will be. It will be Newcastle in some form.”

The format will vary, from possible newspaper prints, to a set of posters or perhaps a small book, he says.

Some of the funds will go towards creation of his own exhibition, Once Observed Thrice Contrived, scheduled for Photoaccess at Manuka in Canberra in 2017.

The project involves creation comparative photos: one of an original man-made structure and another of a model that re-creates the image of the first photo.

“I photograph spaces in forensic way,” he further explains. “I re-create images in 3D sculptures and photorgraph them and put them back into pictures. And they look like the original images.”

The size and presentation of the photos is based on creating tension for the viewer: is it real or unreal.

Smyth lives in Carrington with his wife, Frances, and their kelpie, Lily. He sells his work at local markets.

“I love markets,” he says. “The stories people tell you. About places. Buildings and spaces. To hear those stories informs my work and brings it alive for me.”

Pledges in his Pozible campaign (The Newcastle Editions) start at $49 for a one-year subscription.