Week 5 – Stronger Together

This week’s lectures are called Stronger Together .. and that has been very much the case.

Following last weeks lows around my creative direction, I looked to revisit some of my old methods of photography.

Growing up and over the last few years, I use to take images of what I saw to be interesting, not what I thought people wanted to see. I was not selling work, therefore didn’t put myself under any pressure to develop imagery into any form of commercial state. In fact, I was more abstract with my work than anything else.

I have come to see that during the duration of this MA, my creative direction has faltered, in that, I have been taking pictures for an audience that did not exist. One I had created during the Positions and Practice module, convincing myself that such an audience was looking for a commercial approach to photography.  This notion was reflected in my grade and feedback for the Surfaces and Strategies module.

I now see that this was the wrong direction, for myself and my MA.

So in keeping with this, I have decided to focus more on the images I see as being interesting and building on my methodologies and contextualising rather than the – image for image sake – approach that I had.

With this in mind, I attended this weeks group lecture with Sophie and we looked at a set of experimental images. I wanted to try and develop the methods I had seen used by the likes of  Jem Southam – creating an image that promotes an emotional response from a more considered and subjective view.

The following are some of the images I submitted:








I presented these images (and others) in the webinar as a way of opening up a conversation around impact and aesthetics. I had chosen black and white as a medium as I felt it promoted more focus around detail.

Overall the group felt that this was a good starting point, however, they felt that the images didn’t work as black and white. The use of monochrome was felt by many to take away a lot of emotional detail from the image.

The other issue raised was – that as individuals, some of the images were seen to be very striking – but as a set, there was no cohesion linking the images together. It was found that, without a good story, the image set does not work.

During the same webinar, I was able to hear and speak with a fellow peer Isabella Campbell. Undertaking a study of a local Welsh river, Isabella demonstrated a set of works that showed a great deal of emotional connection with the place and space of the waterway.

I found her work to be very inspirational and very unique as it focuses on reflections and light from the surface of the river. A very different approach and one that produces images that set the context of the water in such a way as to connect it to the land – and vice versa.

Isabella,s work can be seen here

During the webinar, we discussed some ideas around how I could take my work further. It was agreed that we are both looking in different directions in terms of content and hence not repeating the other. However, I was very inspired by her approach and effective methodology.

I was left with an idea that such a reflective approach to the river could be brought into my work and that a way to connect the seasons to the water and land could be achieved.

We are now moving into autumn and I have long wanted to create work that encompasses the changing seasons from the point of view of the river.

I would now like to further this and look at how I could also bring underwater imagery into this concept.