People and Place on Assignment - Tutor report

Yesterday I had a nice chat with my tutor and we were able to talk through my submission for Assignment 4 and the course as a whole. Even though I took a long time to finish the course and at times have felt a bit disconnected from it, I have always really appreciated and learnt a lot from Les' support and advice. 

Looking at my images and the selection I made, Les pointed at a few images I hadn't really noticed and it's great to look at work and discover things that I hadn't seen myself, maybe because I'm very familiar with the people and situations in the image, or I was looking at different criteria when selecting the images. An the suggestion is to convert the images back into colour and I have been working on that this morning. I have to say, that in general I prefer colour images anyway, but because these images were so grainy and in some the light so ugly, I thought I'd better give them a black and white and grainy bath. 

I still have to step out of the idea that images should always be technically perfect. If the narrative is strong, it is ok to be a bit forgiving, so that's what I'm going to be as well. But we continue with the tutor report! 

Overall Comments
You are going for assessment in March 2016. I feel you have challenged yourself. You have also read alongside shooting. The benefits are visible. I have enjoyed viewing and discussing your work with you. Good luck for the future!


I believe our conversations have added to my desire to challenge myself and show more of my work and develop myself instead of just finishing the course as quick as possible. I think the combination of talking on Skype and the report really works well. Thanks for your support!

Assessment potential (after Assignments 2 and 4)

I understand your aim is to go for the Photography/Creative Arts* Degree and that you plan to submit your work for assessment at the end of this course. From the work you have shown in this assignment, providing you commit yourself to the course, I believe you have the potential to succeed at assessment.  In order to meet all the assessment criteria, there are certain areas you will need to focus on, which I will outline in my feedback. 

I'm really happy that I've been given more time to conclude this course and work on the details and make changes according to the advise that were given in the report. In general the feedback has been very constructive and eye opening. Studying the photographers that were suggested will help me expand my vision and ideas on photography and also the way I have been working in this course.

Feedback on assignment Demonstration of technical and Visual Skills, Quality of Outcome, Demonstration of Creativity In addition to, or complimentary to the feedback given during Skype tutorial – I feel you have satisfied your brief. There is the possibility of narrowing this brief down to reflect your reading of Angier, and your ideas of suspended narrative – this sits well with your much earlier Hopper-esque work. The results of your burst of sustained shooting are evident. There is more going on than first appears. I am glad that you chose to make new work. There is scope for future expansion, perhaps a sustained engagement with your new place.

I will explore this idea more and change the brief accordingly. It's a good idea to narrow it down and really focus on this aspect, because it was something I had in mind when photographing and I became much more aware of my role as outsider/mother/photographer, which I would like to explore more. 

I think a book would be appropriate as a final resolution. You want to demonstrate your progression through the assignments. It is a good idea to make this easy for assessors by highlighting what you feel you have achieved on People and Place, such as, aligning your research with your practice, finding a voice, gaining confidence, finding new areas that interest you, and discovering new influences.

Yes, and it's good that I have enough time now to make one and use the printer facilities that I have trust in. I still need to figure out how to incorporate the blog in the book, but I think I'll keep the book as clean and visual as possible, and leave the words and research to my blog. I also want to add a few images from the exercises that I'm especially happy with and reflect my learning curve throughout the course as well.

Looking at the images -
Subtlety, lots going on, ambiguity, you're right, there is a 'lot to see'! If you're impressed by Train your Gaze then use this as much as possible, measure your edit against its ideas. We discussed Bertholdt Brecht's ideas of staging, especially the use of emptiness. Also ideas of the children performing and being 'in-between'. I really like the idea of the home as a waiting room, a good title for this series could 'The Waiting Room'.

Again Sally Mann would be a good reference, but also see Wendy McMurdo, Tina Barney, Collier Schorr, Annelies Strba. I'm ok with black and white, also happy with with your justifications, do feel that the sickliness of artificial light works with waiting room idea so would prefer to see them in their original colour, don't obsess with 'harmonising' the colours, we appreciate the changing of the lights reflecting the transition of time.

I'll look into these artists and reflect on them in new blogs, together with the artists that you have suggested in earlier reports.

Consider these additional photos - Photo 61 in the first selection. The power of the two girls staring back, think about John Berger's comments on the male gaze in Ways of Seeing, think about how powerful and shocking it was to Victorians in Manet's Olympia to see a woman staring back, it still has power now.

Interesting that I thought the image didn't really fit in the set  because the girls are looking at me. You're right, it is very powerful and a sort of break in the flow of being an outsider in the scene. I'll definitely add the image to the set.

Photo 89where it looks like there's a tug of war over the laptop. Sharpness may not be as important as composition here. If you're having them printed check that images are sharp enough for the print size. Less post-production usually means less of a shock when the prints come back! Give yourself plenty of time to review prints.

I have added the image in the set and I think it should work, even though it is not particularly sharp. I'm not printing them in a huge format, so I think that in the size that I'm printing, it should be ok.

Add additional work as research in support of each assignment. Demonstrate why you have made the choices you have made.

I will and thanks again for the opportunity to have more time to work on it and really dive back into my studies. I'm very motivated!

Learning Logs or Blogs/Critical essays Context
Your blog has some very good reflections on work seen and books read. Tie together your thoughts with the images made in response.

Suggested reading/viewing Context
You wanted to add some reviews of the books I'd previously suggested in feedbacks 1-4. 

 Pointers for the next assignment
We discussed moving on to EYV or restarting Digital Film.

Yes, I'm still thinking about that as well and will contact the head office for some advice.