The ‘Doom’ project was inspired and created amid the COVID19 pandemic between 2020 – 2021. It draws upon my personal experience of spiralling negative mental health issues which have been exacerbated by sudden lockdowns, negative news stories and the lack of faith in the current government’s ability to control of the situation. This combination has generated an unremitting feeling of impending Doom, not only for myself but in many of my peers and family.
The new term ‘Doom scrolling’ describing the addictive consumption of large amounts of negative news, was a key focus of this project – combined with its detrimental impact on mental health which is now widely apparent. The use of the hypnotic swirl motif throughout the project represents the idea that we are, and remain, hypnotized by negative media during the pandemic, this in turn can lead to negative pursuits, self-destructive tendencies and fear, leading us to feel out of control not only as a nation but as a collective and individuals.
The hypnotic swirl has been used in Media to represent being under the power of others; it was used in the eyes of the snake Kaa in Disney’s representation of Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book as he took control of his victims, whereas Hitchcock’s use of it in Vertigo; hypnotising the protagonist and the audience into an unreliable reality, emphasises its manipulative and sinister qualities. The ‘Doom’ project draws on these preserved motif characteristics along with the everyday mundane, the ‘new’ normal and feelings of loss of control and incarceration which we have endured during the last 14 months.
(As a result of the lockdown, I did not have any photography equipment with me during the time of this project after being stuck at my family home during the Christmas break. This also meant my work was produced away from university facilities which means most of my photographs for this project were taken on my iPhone. I hope to one day soon continue this project and realise it to the standard to which I feel it deserves)