Archive for the Thoughts on progress, rants, raves, & woes Category


Posted in Thoughts on progress, rants, raves, & woes on June 13, 2011 by Judy Bach

My work has arrived safely at the OCA office ready to be assessed in July. I feel relieved but also slightly lost.

My plan , at the moment, is to have a couple of months break and then start a new course in the Autumn.

Working full-time leaves me little spare time, my house really needs dusting , I have friends to catch up with , my family can have my undivided attention, but I am already missing the routine of studying!


Some final thoughts.

Posted in Thoughts on progress, rants, raves, & woes on April 26, 2011 by Judy Bach

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 .

Live Life or Die

Posted in Thoughts on progress, rants, raves, & woes on April 26, 2011 by Judy Bach
Using a found backdrop!
Live Life or Die.
Live Life or Die by Judy... B
Live Life or Die, a photo by Judy… B on Flickr.

Blogging blues !!!!!

Posted in Thoughts on progress, rants, raves, & woes on April 2, 2011 by Judy Bach

I hate how long my blog is taking to upload images—-that’s my moan for today. I have been up half the night unable to sleep and spent from 2am this morning until 4.30am just uploading——–its so slow! I personally prefer paper and pen but I suppose I can’t remain a Luddite forever. I would rather be spending my time actually finishing my last assignment— that seems to be taking me forever to complete—than messing with the dammed computer.

Slow (snail-like) progress !!!!

Posted in Thoughts on progress, rants, raves, & woes on February 20, 2011 by Judy Bach

Getting behind with my final assignment. I have had so little time to go and do any photography. I have probably made the assignment more difficult for myself by having chosen to do a series of images centering around  teenagers   (the majority are strangers ). I am at work , its raining , or I am just too tired to be bothered. On a positive note I have been doing a bit of work on my blog and have started to record my thoughts about feedback from my previous assignments (I had originally intended keeping these off-line) .  Additionally I have been doing a lot of reading trying to gather thoughts and ideas together , so I guess  I must not feel too despondent.  The course takes a lot of commitment, I recently commented on the OCA Flickr group in response to a question why are people studying photography  that it is a hobby for me, perhaps that was a slight understatement as I find all I think and read about these days is  photography related, its become a passion! (I drive my family nuts). I have no intention at my age (57) of changing career now, but do hope in a few more years when I am finally able to work part-time I will have more time to continue with personal photographic projects as well as continue with my OCA studies. I get immense pleasure learning how to improve my technical skills and to consider how the world functions around me photographically.


Posted in Thoughts on progress, rants, raves, & woes on December 14, 2010 by Judy Bach

I am aware of being very self-critical and at the moment this is taking away the pleasure of photography somewhat for me. Additionally I am really tired, stressed, and snappy . Work is busy, we are short staffed, its Christmas next week and I haven’t written a single card much less finished shopping. On top off all that although assignment 4 images were all printed and ready to go to my tutor I decided 2 days ago they were not really what was expected ! Am I being hyper critical because I am so harassed? I emailed Robert, my tutor, to tell him I would not be submitted my assignment this week as planned but would be re-taking and re-thinking how I could tackle it. He e-mailed me back with some very useful advice, and on reflection I have decided to carry on as planned with this set of images. I feel rather than keep taking more and more photographs I am not happy with it is better to try and move forward towards the final assignment with fresh ideas (and eyes).

Objectivity versus Subjectivity

Posted in Thoughts on progress, rants, raves, & woes on November 20, 2010 by Judy Bach

+ See Reading/ Photographers of Place / Deadpan photography

Approaching assignment 4 I have started to consider  if I need to be more objective. My photos are usually of subjects I feel an affinity for , therefore I believe the majority of my photography is subjective. Photography to me is a way of showing how I feel about someone or something ,and how I see the world around me ,from a very personal point of view. I photograph things that amuse me, make me smile, or I simply like . I enjoy portraiture, how on earth can I tackle an assignment  that calls for an dispassionate  look at what places mean to those who live there? 

Is it even possible to present an unbiased representation, surely the photographer nearly always has some sort of influence on the final image? The photographer chooses when, where ,what and how to capture.Deadpan photography is uninfluenced by individual preferences but by capturing  “scenes from a precise angle—–acknowledges the fact that certain angles make the photographer’s perspective (or experience) more evident to the viewer, and others less so.” pgs 98-99, Chapter 3 , Deadpan ,The photograph as contemporary art.  Charlotte Cotton,  new edition, Thames & Hudson, London 2009.