All images by Thomas Vanoost. Used with permission.
Multiple exposure is a photography technique of combining two or more exposures into one, which have been popularly implemented in fine arts photography as well as highly advanced commercial photography. Thomas Vanoost has utilized the multiple exposure approach in his personal photography project of expressing the sense of chaos and instability in the world.
Thomas Vanoost (from Belgium) was a passionate photography enthusiast driven to create something different and unique. He found multiple exposure to be the best approach in representing the reality of the world as he perceived to be fundamentally unstable and radically chaotic. In his philosophical ideology behind the photography project, Thomas further questioned the reality we live in, which he claimed to be nothing but an illusion to mask uncertainties and deceptions in life. Therefore, he intended to express the existential anxiety associated with the chaotic and unstable nature of the world around him in his photography. Basically, the recurring theme in his images in this photo series “Visions of Daily Chaos” is the fear of the unknown.
Typically, multiple exposure photography combines two or more completely different images with usually different subjects and composition choices to form an interesting visual, which may appear random and unexpectedly interesting at the same time. Instead, Thomas chose to do the complete opposite: he shot the exact same subject and scene in a few takes but with slight variation in composition which he then merged into one. Thomas revealed to us that the merging of multiple images was done via post-production. He has experimented with in-camera multiple exposure (which is widely available in many newer cameras these days), but in the end he decided to take individual shots from slightly different angles and focal lengths and subsequently stack them together manually in post-production. This resulted in images showing shadowy multiple outlines of the subjects, as if spatial and temporal manipulation was involved, reinforcing his feeling of instability. There was a sense of uneasiness when looking at the images and the underlying message is clear: the world is an ever changing place.