Osteology 2

Finding new ways to display human skeletons for study and to highlight the differences in form and structure that tell of their lives.

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Skeleton cage
Skeleton cage

Skeletons often move and jiggle when photographed, so tying them down is the only way to get a still image

Skeleton cage
Skeleton cage

Skeletons often move and jiggle when photographed, so tying them down is the only way to get a still image

Skeleton cage
Skeleton cage

Skeletons often move and jiggle when photographed, so tying them down is the only way to get a still image

Thoughtful skeleton
Thoughtful skeleton

sitting in a chair is remarkably challenging for a skeleton

Sitting and relaxing
Sitting and relaxing

sitting in a chair is remarkably challenging for a skeleton

Sit up
Sit up

sitting in a chair is remarkably challenging for a skeleton

shoulder
shoulder

close ups of the torso

Rib cage front
Rib cage front

close ups of the torso

arched ribcage
arched ribcage

close ups of the torso

Sitting still
Sitting still

sitting in a chair is remarkably challenging for a skeleton

Skeleton cage
Skeleton cage

Skeletons often move and jiggle when photographed, so tying them down is the only way to get a still image

Thinking in the chair
Thinking in the chair

sitting in a chair is remarkably challenging for a skeleton

just from the back
just from the back

close up of strung skeleton

ribcage from the back
ribcage from the back

close ups of the torso

just from the front
just from the front

close up of strung skeleton

This series was inspired when I was commissioned to produce a high resolution photo of a skeleton for a mindfulness jigsaw. Skeletons have a tendency to be mischievous. Despite care and caution when transporting to death awareness event, skeletons have a habit of deciding to drop a limb en route, or stand with dislocated shoulders and twisted knees. I've heard similar reports from others working with skeletons - you daren't walk too close as they will catch threads on your jumper or rip up your lacey skrit. Dropping anything in the same room will mean finding skeleton fingers in your hair as you bend down to retrieve a pencil from the floor.
 
In this case, two hours into the photo shoot, after carefully setting the pose with invisible threads of cotton and on the 16th photo of 20, the skeleton broke the threads in order to dislocate a shoulder and twist the pelvis. As a consequence, we had to restart from scratch. I resolved that next time I worked on getting a high resolution image of a skeleton, I would use more robust string. As I set this up, I realised that the string and cage around the skeleton told its own story - a mix of scientific illustration and escapology.
Though it is obvious that they are dead and inanimate, somehow they also have a lively personality.