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general information 

Spotshots´ noncommercial projects discover habitats inside societies. People and artefacts are seen within their social structures and environment. Each photo follows initially it´s end in itself, which is to display the pure image as an artwork as such. Moreover it´s purpose is to communicate information on what is behind the surface of what you can see. This is done by exploring those worlds in order to understand more through the system of images collected. In this way the photos do just as well serve as empirical data, sustantiating my reseach carried out in these fields. Thus my images can thouroughly be seen as serving art and cultural science simultaneously - giving us an idea of what can be. 

Thanks a lot to Armin for his advice and technical realization.  

Christian Byczek 

 

contact 

In case you are interested in my projects, images or in booking me for a commercial shooting, don’t hesitate to contact me via e-mail: blub@spotshots.de 

 

 

Ladyboys

 

Ladyboys – visual exploration of a world between aesthetic and bizarre.

This approach goes beyond popular clichees, enters the word behind a glamorous façade and and portaits individuals and everyday life within that habitat. 

Our immediate perception of an individual follows a binary classification of appraisal. We distinguish between male and female and in this manner have been socialized in a way that allows us to play assured in a relative safety of cognition. But what, if this norm becomes puzzled by an individual that makes our distinction difficult or even impossible? What if we are not able anymore to determine whether we decide to follow up with the logic of behaviour, that we choose to confront females, or with that for males? Obviousely the biologic dimension of sex and the social dimension of gender are closely interrelated. Phenomena of transgender redefine those roles. The perception of a male person as female or at least something in between points out the high skill which belongs to the natural affiliation to a certain sex. We have to consider a practical knowledge relating the player´s habit, an ability which is in first regard of a physical nature and which requires that social affiliation to a certain sex is being performed in each gesture. This sphere mixing up dispositions of individuals within different cultural and subcultural clusters creates amazing images for visual studies in the field of transgender. I try to capture those images on film and digital media. While doing so I focus on the ladyboys of the Far East.  

As the project´s scope will extend, I will add research articels. Then images will serve as empirical data proving my work. You will get deeper insights in that world between aesthetic and bizarre and you will learn about mechanisms of construction of the everyday life, of kinds of relationships, srtuctures of power and dependency as well as of the distiction between stage and reality within this scene.

 

Surf

Are players who are following an “endless summer” addicted to a sport that has the same efffect as a drug or are they just interested in an attractive lifestyle with the side effect of helping themselfes passing the time cruising down a glassy wave? What are the motives for many of these quys and sometimes girls to “extegrate” to a certain extent from a normal life in order to live their surferlife? An approach in visual sociology to space of meaning within the subcultural sphere of surf-riders.



the method of visual sociology 

“existence – seeing – communicating with icons – doing sociology visually” (Grady, 1996) 

Visual sociology is – in Germany – a relatively new and “underexposed” discipline of social sciences and epistemology. “…the “working knowledge” of visual sociology is based on the one thing which all visual sociologists have in common: using images to study society”. (Grady, 1996) What John Grady says to be doing sociology visually offers myself a set of instruments of analytical research, that allows to combine my studies in sociology with my passion to capture images in form of photographs. The idea was brought into my mind by a lecturer of sociology at university, whose course framed my first qualitative study – an approach to space of meaning and construction of everyday life within the subcultural sphere of surf-riders. I participated within the scene as a kind of embedded observer. The field work in France and Bali led to numerous interviews and original-tone, relevant observations and to views as such in form of impressive photographs, visual data – and to at least one more part-time surfer out on the ocean. 

Why is a qualitative approach in form of a visual study relevant? Social organizations do see and do communicate via sight – people perceive their environment for the most part by sight. Cultural codes are displayed, in this way sent, and again received, so seen. Such existing images can be captured and so the “visual image - or icon – is, thus, a functional prerequisite to any kind of analysis.” (Grady, 1996) This way the images - captured observations – have three functions: They become at first fundamental empirical data, containing “the feel”, that I got when I embedded myself into the investigated sphere. They do, secondly, support the source of the interviews. And do, third, work as perfect means for communicating the results. Such can be seen on my website. 

Note on literature:
John Grady, in “Visual Sociology”, 11 (2), pp. 10-24, International Visual Sociology Association, 1996

 

Structures

A structure is an order of parts of a whole to each other. Structures can consist of numerous kinds of parts in numerous constellations. Different societies built different ways of living in each their cultures. These social structures are on the one hand influenced by cultural standards, by the environment the player is surrounded by. On the other hand they are founded in the acting of individuals following their individual dispositions. The process globalisation, which is not only the expansion of networks in the field of business, finance and communication but also the interlinkage of societies and the rise of a global culture on specific areas, also evolves change. Thus we find a very interdependent cluster of social structures, which are determinde by uncountable parameters. In global cities we have all those societies concentrated on the metropolitan area. We have people, living a local way of life as well as people living a global way of life, as well those in beween these two levels of development or to be more neutral, what is my aim, we could also say between these two types of distinctness. They live in these cities in any form of structure. Not only socially, but also material. Both, the global and the local people and each their subsystems of class and levels of society use any form of accomodation for living and any form of building to work at. From cardboard shacks in slums and squatter settlements to simple rooms in concrete blocks, from middle class flats in appartment blocks to luxury condominiums on the top floors of towers behind airconditioned glass facades. All these facades, however they look like, represent the social structure people are living and working in. We can therefore say that social structures have a close link to building structures. Passing through the steets of Asian megacities like Bangkok I was asking myself how people would live behind the facades, that I just saw from outside. From then on I had the idea of the equivocation of structure in three diffenrent meanings. My zoom-shots at first sight display structures. Graphical ones. Those structures are all part of buildings – of structures build for a certain purpose. Material ones. This purpose is determined by other strucures. Social ones. Of the people behind the facades. How do they live?

  

technical notes 

The spotshots websites are optimized for a monitor resolution of 1024x768 pixels and Microsoft Windows Internet Explorer™.

 

 legal notes 

Information on copyright 

All rights of the pictures of the photographer Christian Byczek shown on the www.spotshots.de websites are reserved. Unauthorized copying, public performance, publishing, broadcasting, hiring, rental or selling of the pictures is prohibited.

 

Information on the right of the image of his/her own 

If anybody sees his/her right of the image of his/her own trespassed anywhere on the www.spotshots.de websites, please contact me. I will check the case and, should the need arise, remove that image from the websites immediately.

 

Information on explicit contents 

This website partly contains explicit material. In the narrower sense art as well as scientific material do not constitute pornography. Due to the critical definitions by law, I use the phrase “explicit material” regarding to any kind of contents which deviate from the norm. Some galleries, which amongst other contents, include explicit art / explicit scientific material as data source for sociological studies. Images here diplay art and empirical material, which is made and produced for adults. You must only enter these galleries in case you´ve reached majority following (the age of) your county´s law and you are allowed to download those contents following your county´s law as well as you are sure, the contents will not harm or hurt you in any way. Linking to these galleries will be in your own responsibility. Parents are remembered to provide for their children.

 

Information on links 

I have linked my commercial customer`s websites under the galleries. Although I carefully checked the content of these sites I cannot take any responsibility for these site´s contents. Thus I distance myself from these websites´ contents and may point out that linking to these sites will be under your own responsibility.

 

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