BA Phot

Identity & Place: Assignments

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[20Apr20]I will not be applying for this course for a while yet as I am still working on C&N. I want to know the assignments coming up however so they are on the mind's back-burner with virus lockdown variants in mind. I am copying the text from Lynda's I&P site. All there will be for now are the assignment texts and a link to the online course extract.

[21Apr] for C&N, I shot (or at least finalised) everything in 6x7 format. (In practise, this meant shooting in 6x6 where possible and cropping to 6x7). For I&P I might shoot in 6x7ish and do it all one one camera and perhaps even one lens: as there is a lot of portrait photography involved, I might go for the Fuji X100#.

[25Jun] A thought yesterday, although it would be impractical for every shot, how about scattering the work with panoramas? I'll leave that to settle. [28Jun] I found an old selection of panoramas on an old site of mine this morning. I had forgotten most of those and how much fun they were to create in the old days.

[13Jul] see Asg1 below


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Box A
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Asg. 1 - The non-familiar

Your first assignment is to make five portraits of five different people from your local area who were previously unknown to you.
You will almost certainly find it challenging to make photographs of people you don’t know; it’s often much easier to photograph somebody you’re already familiar with. This could be referred to as the ‘comfort zone’ – and for the purposes of this assignment you will be specifically required to leave it!
Leaving technical photographic considerations aside, there are a whole range of issues to deal with in making a portrait of somebody you don’t know. This additional skill set should arguably be in every photographer’s kitbag, regardless of what genre of photography they end up working in. The ability to concentrate on technical and aesthetic considerations whilst engaging with a complete stranger brings a plethora of difficulties. Added to the fact that most people aren’t that comfortable with having their photograph taken anyway, then you can see why this could become a minefield!
Just as you learn the techniques behind how your photographic equipment works, there are techniques you can learn about how to photograph people you’ve never met before. Many historical and contemporary portrait photographers have written about this and one piece of advice stands out:
If it is at all possible, spend time with your subject, getting to know them and triggering a dialogue with them, prior to even showing them your camera. OCA, Photography 3: Identity & Place

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Ideas
[13Jul20] So the plan is to stick with 6x7. he one camera / one lens idea came and went, but see below.

Bearing in mind that we will still be virus affected when I start, my current plan is to photograph whoever is serving at the tills of the local charity shops and include an image of the shot exteriors. If that that doesn't fly, try alternative related emporia, e.g. pub staff or charity shops elsewhere. I'll probably run pubs in parallel anyway.

Within that, consider using a single lens for all the portrait shots (and maybe for the exteriors, but that is not so significant. The idea is to achieve a degree of consistency: I wrote last night, "thematic and stylistic consistency"
and also, if I get consistent refusals snap them unawares, or snap an empty till - that would not meet the brief but it would show something of other significance.
and don't forget the possibility of panoramas - a pano showing the wares with the till in the middle? might be worth a try. Consider lighting (Joby cube?)


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Asg. 2 - Vice Versa, date

The objective of this assignment is to provide you with an opportunity to explore the themes covered in Part Two with regard to the use of both studio and location for the creation of portraits. This assignment is about taking what has worked from the above exercises and then trying to develop this further in terms of interchanging the use of portraits taken on location (street) with portraits taken inside (studio). You need to develop a series of five final images to present to the viewer as a themed body of work. Pay close attention to the look and feel of each image and think how they will work together as a series. The theme is up to you to choose; you could take a series of images of a single subject or a series of subjects in a themed environment. There is no right answer, so experimentOCA, Photography 3: Identity & Place

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Asg. 3 - Mirrors and Windows, date

Choose ONE of the following:

a. ‘Mirror’
Choose a community that you’re already a part of. It could be your child’s nursery or your regular gym class, but it should be something that takes up a substantial amount of your interest and time.
Create a photographic response to how this group informs who you are as a person. What aspects of this group or community reflect on you? What do you share? How does it function as a mirror reflection of who you are?

b. ‘Window’
Use this opportunity to find out about a community that you don’t know much about and tell their story. Get to know them and talk to them; learn by listening and understanding.
Your aim here is to become an insider. You’re beginning as an outsider so it is important to choose a group that you can spend a lot of time with. Negotiation skills and respect are intrinsic to working well with your subjects and are invaluable skills for your development as a photographer.
Be clear about your intentions and involve your subjects in the process in order to obtain the best results. What window into this world can you access through your role as photographer?

In either case you can create as many pictures as you like but, in your reflective commentary, explain how you arrived at the final edit. The set should be concise and not include repetitive or unnecessary images. Be attentive to this aspect of production. Spend some time researching how other photographers seem to edit series of works. There’s helpful advice on editing and sequencing in Maria Short (2011) Context and Narrative, Lausanne: AVA Publishing.

Some questions to consider are:
What order should the images be shown in?
Are there too many repetitive images?
Do you need to let go of earlier images because the project has changed?
Are you too close to some of your favourite pictures and they don’t fit the sequence?
Do you need to re-shoot any for technical reasons? Are there any gaps that need to be filled?

Send your final series of images to your tutor together with your reflective commentary (500 words) on this assignment. OCA, Photography 3: Identity & Place

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Asg. 4 - name, date

Create a series of work (aim for 7 to 10 images) which in some way reflects upon the ideas surrounding identity and place that you’ve looked at so far in this course. Use the written word to play a part in its creation…
Be wary of illustrating your text with pictures and vice versa. Allow for the viewers’ interpretation to be opened up rather than shut down by the pairings. You may decide not to include the actual words in the final production … as long as they have in some way informed the research and development of the concepts and have pushed the imagery further as a result.
Write a short reflective commentary (around 500 words) describing how your chosen ‘words’ have informed your series of images and make this available to your tutor alongside your images. OCA, Photography 3: Identity & Place

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Asg. 5 - name, date

Look back at the themes we’ve examined relating to place and our presence within it. What areas inspired you most?
The culmination of this course is a self-directed assignment where you have free rein to choose a subject that relates to any of the material discussed in the course. You may have gathered skills and insights through the projects that you want to revisit or you may have been inspired by other ideas.
The only stipulation is that the final outcome must represent a notion of identity and place that you are personally inspired by. Make sure that your work is visually consistent, relevant to the subject matter you choose and holds together well as a set, both visually and conceptually.
Think carefully about your editing decisions.
Which images need to be there?
Which ones repeat other images?
Are you holding on to a favourite that is no longer required?
Do you need to re-shoot anything?
Aim for a coherent set of no more than 15 pictures, accompanied by a reflective commentary of no more than 500 words.

Reflection
Before you send your work to your tutor, check it against the assessment criteria listed in the introduction to this course guide and make sure that it meets all the criteria.
Make your evaluation available to your tutor.

Reworking your assignment
Following feedback from your tutor, you may wish to rework some of your assignment,specially if you plan to submit your work for formal assessment. If you do this, make sure you reflect on what you’ve done, and why, in your learning log. OCA, Photography 3: Identity & Place

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Melting pot

This is where all the assignment ideas meet to plan photographic outings and adventures. It remains to be seen how (or whether) this will work.

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References

Bloomfield, R (2017) Expressing your vision [EyV]. Barnsley: Open College of the Arts.

Boothroyd, S. and Roberts, K. (2019) Identity and place [I&P]. Barnsley: Open College of the Arts.

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Page created 20-Apr-2020 | Page updated 12-Oct-2020