Nostalgic – the idea of what could have been

My first thought when I read the nostalgia challenge was that this one is written for me.

“As an assignment, create a photographic work that consciously wrestles with the concept of ‘nostalgia’ and photography’s unique relationship to it.”

My second thought was, I don’t even have to do this one because I’ve already done it. I do it all the time; I’m constantly wrestling with the concept of nostalgia. So many of my pictures with the troopers are connected to the theme of nostalgia. Or they are about being a parent exploring the world through the eyes of a child. Or they are about being a child longing for a parents attention or love. Suddenly I started to overthink myself: is this really the concept I wrestle with? I’m not sure…

nostalgia I
nostalgia I by K.Alexanderson
nostalgia II by K.Alexanderson
nostalgia II by K.Alexanderson
nostalgia III by K.Alexanderson
nostalgia II by K.Alexanderson

Anyway, I started this challenge by doing a series of pictures looking back on motive, which I’ve done before. I though this series would be my response to this challenge, but when I looked the series through, I thought it lacked a meta-aspect, as well as the wrestling part. So I decided to go in a different direction.

nostalgia II (alternative version) by K.Alexanderson
nostalgia II (alternative version) by K.Alexanderson

The challenge is to create a photographic work that wrestles with the concept of nostalgia, and since my first try missed the target, I decide to do a fan-fiction picture depicting a tender moment between the dark lord and what could be his child. A nostalgic moment that wrestles with the idea of what could have been… or not.

The Dark Lord - what could have been
The Dark Lord -what could have been…

Anyway, this challenge was fun. I really loved doing it and I’m so impressed with Shelly’s great result!


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7 years ago

Kristina, Im wondering if you’re too close to this topic? You seem to have dismissed it rather quickly with a simple “I already do this everyday.” But do you really? I see your troopers interacting, I see the children telling secrets, I see a son standing behind his protective father – but I question how these are nostalgic, rather than recent images. Why do you choose to wash out the colors? Why are you shooting in a Hi-Key style? What do these symbolize to you? Also if the last image was to represent a possible father / son embrace, why… Read more »

7 years ago
Reply to  kalexanderson

Wow – thanks for the awesome response! This really helps clarify so much. I was confused – I thought the parent child photos were of you and your kids, it make more sense that they are of you and your own father. Thank you for also explaining your position on high-key. I thought that might be where you were coming from, but its nice to have that confirmed. Thank you again for taking the time to reply. :) ps – I don’t think there is a correct way to expose an image. It is one of the many deliberate choices… Read more »

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