Reflection Following Tutor Feedback

I’m very encouraged following this feedback, finding it largely positive, while the points of criticism are entirely valid and give me a route to move forward.

I should mention that I did actually include links to larger versions of the photos, both in the main ‘Square Mile’ post, and in the digital submission. I will though make a point to include links to larger images in all future posts (including this one).

History, and examining or representing aspects of the past is something I’m interested in, and do include in many of my photos (and my YouTube videos), so it may be that this will be something I focus on in the course. Having said that, at this early stage, I wish to explore as many possible avenues as I can. I’m unsure if the retrospective angle is where I ‘find my own voice’ or if it’s simply a rut I’m already stuck in, and should possibly think about breaking out of.

On the piece of coursework that confused me: I will look at it again, and while I suspect that Asperger’s Syndrome may be a factor in my struggling to interpret the question in anything other than a literal manner, my wife (who does not have Asperger’s) also could not make sense of it, and she’s a qualified teacher (and in the nicest possible way, a grammar nazi).

Specific points

Image 1.  Going back to take this shot again would definitely have been a good move.

I think I was trying to be a bit too clever, covering too many bases in one image. Night photography, illusionism, and the car interior as a framing device to set the narrative. The result is a jumble, so you don’t really know where you’re supposed to be looking.

This isn’t helped by the car in the middle ground, which while it adds to a possible narrative, creates an extra distraction from the subject.

Unfortunately, going back was not an option within a reasonable timeframe (Long story).

There is more detail viewable in the larger image linked in the main ‘Square Mile’ post (and this post), but I agree that the overall image quality is below par.

How much of this is down to a lack of skill on my part, and how much down the the Panasonic FZ50 having a small sensor and poor low light performance… I don’t know. However, Christmas has come early here (my wife is wonderful), and I now have a Canon EOS 1300D, which I’m fairly confident will produce better results in similar conditions.

I do wonder if the image I rejected was actually the better shot, for while it still lacks detail in the darker areas, the tighter framing possibly makes for a superior composition.

Image 2. I don’t even need to google ‘wooden jetty going in to lake’… I’ve seen that shot a million times and know exactly what images I would find.

I agree, the composition is a cliché, (a concern mentioned in the main submission). On reflection, while I decided to include it due to the pleasing sensation created by the compositional device, I accept that my weighing of the pros vs cons was a miscalculation.

Image 3.  This was me trying to step outside of my comfort zone. Usually I tend to make use of perspective lines and vanishing points, where here I was deliberately not doing that. The result is an image with a different feel, which while I like it, does indeed make it quite a mismatch with the other images. Note to self: Just because I like an image, doesn’t mean I should include it in a series.

Image 4.  I’m a fan of the ‘wonky’ shot (probably from years of reading car magazines, with their dramatic action shots), and while I don’t use it very frequently, it is something I like to play with from time to time. Getting the car breaking into the shot like that, and having it work… that’s not something I’ve ever tried before, but it’s not unusual for me to try something new, just to see what happens.

Image 5. The black and white was indeed covering a technical error, and I agree, its use in a series of colour images could lead the viewer to question the reason for its inclusion. On its own, or in a series of other black and whites, I would defend its use, as the resulting image is pleasing to my eye… though in that circumstance, I would not have mentioned the technical issues in the first place.

Image 6. I’m pleased that the title worked well with the image. I feel that this image most successfully achieved what I was trying to represent with the whole series, and the title was a distillation of that.  As mentioned previously, there is a link to a larger version of this in the main ‘Square Mile’ post, the digital submission, (and this post).


Having looked at the suggested links:

Dan Holdsworths night-time pictures


I love that type of work, and have wanted to do something along those lines for years. Unfortunately, while I’m loathe to blame my equipment, even at minimum ISO settings, sensor noise tends to be a problem on the type of equipment that has fallen within my budget. I’m hoping my new Canon EOS 1300D will achieve better results. While it’s very much at the entry level, I’m hopeful, and look forward to experimenting.

Now I just need a night when my wife doesn’t have to be up early. (Our dogs bark continually if anyone leaves the house after dark and no-one’s there to console them.)


Bernd Becher and Hilla Becher’s Industrial typologies

Industrial architecture is something I’m fascinated by, and am perhaps a bit odd in that I miss the dirty old industrial landscape of Sheffield, on a purely aesthetic level.

Typologies are something new to me, so this is very interesting. Having read ahead somewhat in the course material and assignments, I can see that this is something I need to pay attention to.


Wolfgang Tillmans – Use of colour and black and white


The black and white images seem to me like a row of windows looking into another part of the building, as if somehow a separate thing from the exhibition of colour images above them.

My guess is that this is achieved by the contrast in colour vs b&w, size, subject matter, positioning and levels of order in arrangement. It sets them apart to the point that my brain perceives them as something entirely different.

Also, I find it interesting that the ‘windows’ offer a view into other interior areas, while it is the ‘photos’ that offer outdoor views.

This exhibition is functioning on so many levels. It boggles my brains… in a good way.


Martha Rosler – The Bowery in Two Inadequate Descriptive Systems

I found Martha’s explanation of her work thought provoking. Her way of addressing the whole ‘find a bum’ mentality to certain types of photography strikes me as enlightened. There are questions of ethics when shooting poverty for personal gain. She addresses this by removing any question of exploitation, excluding images of the poverty stricken from their settings, and replacing them with their words.

This gives me many things to think about, aesthetically, and conceptually.


Author: Photos Things and Stuff

Study Log for Expressing Your Vision module, for BA (Hons) Photography Degree with OCA

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