Some final thoughts.

I’ve posted my last assignment and must now get my work organised and ready for assessment in July (2011). As well as this blog I have a paper journal with articles, cuttings, etc. Although I sent 5 x 7 images to my tutor I have now printed all of my assignment photographs on Permajet Fine Art Fibre Royal Base 325gsm A4 paper for assessment. I enjoy printing all my own work, it is very satisfying to be in complete control from start to finish.

I’ve found the course extremely challenging at times, especially when photographing complete strangers. However I have taken images, and met some interesting people, whom I would never have considered approaching prior to this course.Roger is one such person, see separate blog section re Roger. The coursework has given me the courage to approach people with a wide angled lens rather than hiding some distance away with my long 200mm telephoto lens. The image below represents a moment of achievement for me when I became brave enough to go really up close and personal, and the one I have chosen for the front page of my Blog.

I have invested in an ultra wide 10-22mm lens which, along with a 50mm prime, has become a favourite. I was lucky enough to return to Cornwall again this month and managed to take some much wider images of the Minack Theatre as suggested by Robert following assignment 3 ,shame there was no performance .

Working towards assignment 4 I also discovered just how peaceful, and fulfilling, landscape photography can be, something I was never particularly interested in before. I wrote in my blog how I nearly did not submit my chosen images but am glad to say I feel this was one of my most successful assignments. The assignment forced me to really observe the light and my surroundings carefully, a skill that I hope I can build on. On holiday in April this year I got up at 5am –unheard of for me—simply to take some landscape photographs for pleasure.

I still love my black velvet background but have learned to look around me and see the potential in all sorts of everyday places to provide  interesting, and free, backdrops (see below Live Life or Die).

I have developed a growing interest in surrealism and using photography as a way of expressing thoughts and feelings , something I have tried to incorporate into some of my assignment work. This is certainly an area I hope to expand on in the future. My tendancy to frequently focus on smaller details and objects has however  perhaps meant that often my assignment work was not really what was being asked for. Is this the beginning of a personal style perhaps? Developing a distinct way of working photographically takes time and experience , I feel it has to grow and mature into something unique.

I have enjoyed discovering new (to me) photographers and enjoyed looking at their work for inspiration, especially Lise Sarfati,  whose work influenced my decision to present my final assignment in colour rather than black and white. I have got a set of images on Flickr that have been inspired by some favourite photographers, an ongoing project and one I want to carry on adding to, but am aware that I must try and build on my own skills to create a style all of my own.   Set here :

I am slowly adding to my growing collection of  photography books , I also subscribe to Hotshoe & Ag photography journals. I  enjoy reading and learning about photographic theory, new thoughts and ideas, as well as just enjoying the stunning art work .

I  have managed to improve (slightly !) my PS skills. I intend to have a summer break and then enrol on my last level one course DPP which I hope will further these skills.

I have tried to reflect constructively after each assignment and have recorded my responses to tutor comments in my blog section Assignment reports. I found this hard sometimes but do understand how reviewing images retrospectively, along  with tutor feedback , helps build up skills, and rather than be despondant about mistakes try to learn from them.

Finally I must thank first of all Robert, my tutor, for his invaluable critiques and feedback. Also my long suffering family for putting up with my ongoing obsession with photography and being patient (sometimes!) models for me .


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