Thursday, 7 February 2013


John Rankin Waddell, working name Rankin, born 1966, is an English portrait and fashion photographer. Rankin was brought up in St Albans, Hertfordshire. He studied accounting at the University of Falmouth, he then dropped out realising that his interest and future lay elsewhere, He started to study photography at the London College of Printing. During this time, Rankin met Jefferson Hack. The two decided to start a magazine together called Dazed & Confused once they had graduated.

The Rankin 'Destroy Project was created to celebrate the youth musics 10th birthday. Rankin then took photographs of 70 of the worlds greatest musicians and then let the visual artist and musicians destroy or manipulate their image. Musicians such as U2, Kylie Minogue, Ian Brown, Little Boots,  and visual artists including Damien Hirst have 'destroyed' a Rankin print of themselves and turned the image into a unique and original piece of art. These photographs were then put in a book as part of the national youth music week 2009. You can find all of the destroy project online at Rankin Destroy.

Rankin is a photographer that always tries to look for the honesty in lies, I feel that this project was created so that the musicians (the subject in the photograph) could manipulate, deconstruct and reconstruct or even destroy the image of themselves so that it could be changed to find the honest meaning and more about how they see themselves or about how they feel overs see them. 

After looking through the whole gallery of the Rankin destroy project I chose these three images that I liked the best:


This is Robyn's destroy portrait for the project. Robin Miriam Carlsson (born 12 June 1979), better known by her stage name Robyn, is a Swedish recording artist. Robyn became known in the late nineties for her worldwide dance-pop hit "Do You Know (What It Takes)" from her debut album Robyn Is Here (1997). I really like this photograph as the lighting used on Robyn's face is really effective as it creates a clear tone over her skin. I feel that Rankin used bright lighting on Robyn to try and make the photo really bright and contrasting to get this clear tone on her skin to show her use of make up as Rankin said himself "No matter how many records she sells or how big she becomes. It’s all about the art – her haircut’s about art, the make-up, what she wears". I also really like how there is a nice shadow glow behind Robyn's head and under her chin, because it brings her forward from the background and makes you concentrate more on her facial expression. 

Robyn Used Acrylic paint on the photograph of herself for this destroy project. I feel that she used this paint to resemble her make up and for it to look like her make up has been wiped of her face. This effect she's done of wiping the paint away from her face could mean that she's trying to show her true self under the masks of make up that she wears all the time. Robyn has also used a bright pink coloured acrylic paint to sign her name in the corner, this pink colour could also resemble lipstick that she wears.

My Rankin Destroy Inspired Work:

This was my first Rankin destroy piece I did. I like this one best out of the three because i really like hoe I've used masking tape and also how I've added my eyes from a different photo of myself and used then to add a slight 3D effect. I also used red ink and felt tip coloured pens to add a splash of colour to my work, and also to add a meaning to show that I'm fun and energetic. I also really like how I've added a border of masking tape because it gives the photograph much more depth and makes you focus a lot on the eyes.   

This was my second Rankin destroy work that I did to one of the photographs of myself. For this one I used a scalpel to cut lots of different angled lines on the photograph. I don't like this one as much as my first one but still do like it because how where I have cut it and the strips have made face into an abstract portrait.   

This is my last Rankin destroy that I did of a black and white photo of myself. I wanted to add a illustration feel to this piece. I firstly cut out areas of the image then used fine liner and felt tip coloured pens to draw in what was there before. I do like this one but feel that I shouldn't of rushed it and could've used pencil and shading to add more detail.

1 comment:

  1. Well done Ben. Just a little to add. Think about how you could expand on the last section.

    This is where you got your quote from, look again for info on paints used and discuss why she has done what she has done.