Last Sunday I exhibited at the Marsden Mechanics wedding fair, it was a lovely day and was brill to get to meet more future brides and grooms! Along with myself there was also many other wonderful suppliers including my friend at Elizabeth Baker Photography, Woo’B’Woo, Attention to Detail, John Francis Cakes, Jane Dias Millinery, Lily Blossom Florist, and many more!
Don’t forget if you book my photography services before July 2017 you can get your 2018 wedding for 2017 prices!
Below are some photos I took at the fair:
After the success I had from taking photos with my dad on my last two shoots I am going to continue to use this method, I’m now going to be taking voice recordings from the shoots. This will be helpful to me to be able to listen back on the conversations we had and reflect on this while choosing photos for my book, I will also be able to use these to go back to the locations and photograph more without someone watching me shoot over my shoulder. Here are a few photos from my newest shoot for my Final Major Project.
On Tuesday we had another artist lecture from Edinburgh based photographer Bronia Stewart, she started her photography journey when she did a 6 month course which she described as being more practical than creative. She built up her experience while assisting other photographers for 2 years, while doing this she developed an interest in film photography. After this she moved onto full time work as she found assisting to be too unstable, while working full time this allowed her to fund her project for her MA which lead to her going freelance. She also does commercial work to give her the funds and freedom to be able to create personal projects.
- Image from ‘Essex’ by Bronia Stewart; source
Bronia explained to us how she creates her photos with the distinct aesthetic and some of the difficulties that she comes across from being a documentary photographer. Her photos are all captured using an on camera speedlight to create a hard light effect on the subjects, it is also very practical for her when working in a faced paced environment. She told us it is important knowing how to protect your images, when photographing people she said that you have to be open and honest about what you’re photographing but not to give too much away; “be careful – but not too careful”. To help with this honesty that she applies to her work she shows subjects her work as she goes along. She told us how with photographing documentary it is hard to explain right away what you’re trying to do with a project and sometimes the aim of the project becomes clear along the way or at the end of shooting. Bronia sets her self self-imposed deadlines for her work; which I found to be very useful and something I will start to apply myself.
Babe Station was her first project which she did for her MA and it was shown at the Photographers Gallery in London which was then printed in various newspapers such as the Sunday Times and it was also the My Best Shot in the Guardian. This project lead her onto her Essex project when she wanted to carry on exploring women who were influenced by media and wanted careers that followed that influence from the media and so she looked into magazines and reality TV such as ITV show The Only Way Is Essex. She looked at the young girls who would be unpaid extras on the show but the producers wouldn’t give her access to this so sometimes she would go in as an extra herself just to get into the scene. Bronia said that when she was working on these types of projects she wanted to take a non-judgemental view on the environments she was in and people she was with. So she developed a friendship with her subjects and this lead her to get an understanding behind why they were in the situations she was in such as Babe station.
She told us about her current project that she is working on in Edinburgh about the rich/poor divide, Bronia is trying to get in with the richest and the poorest schools in Edinburgh to follow the lives of potentially two girls from each and look at their lives and families and how they differ.
Overall from Bronia’s talk I took a lot of inspiration from how she formed relationships with her clients to create a relaxed and non-judgemental take on the projects she worked on.
For my next shoots I went out twice with my dad, I have decided to expand the project more from just looking at my own memories and more at other peoples memories of places. My dad took me around some of his old schools and we walked the journey that he used to walk from his old childhood home to the school he went to for most of his life. Again I think a few of these images were very successful and I will be using these within the final edit for my book.
On Tuesday we had a guest lecture via Skype with Jack Latham, unfortunately I was ill and couldn’t attend the lecture however I have spent my Sunday evening catching up with the lecture via lecture capture and I’m glad I did!
Jack Latham is a photographer from wales who now lives and works in Brighton and he studied a documentary photography course in Newport. Outside of his photo projects he does advertising commissions, he runs an in house printing studio, is co-curator at Brighton based event Mini-Click and he is also a contributor to a welsh photographic collective called ‘Fine Beginnings’ which has been exhibiting across the UK since 2013.
Jack first started in photography when he was 19, he stated that he didn’t have a clue what he was doing when he first began and was purely a keen hobbyist. Tim Hetherington was a family friend of Jack’s and he really helped and encouraged Jack when he was starting his career in photography. Jack said that when he first began he wanted to be a war photographer however when Tim passed in Libya this changed where Jack wanted his photography path to lead.
-Image from Pink Flamingo by Jack Latham; source
Pink flamingo was a project that he started during university when he went to america for one month to photograph the Oregon Trail. This was inspired by an educational video game about the Oregon Trail. He started to wonder how the trail looked in real life and in present day. During this project he looked at photographing more metaphorically following Tim’s passing, he said he took different things from different contexts to create something larger. Throughout this project the images follow a similar aesthetic of a quiet sadness, he said that everyone he met in america was happy to be photographed and to have their stories heard.
– Image from Sugar Paper Theories by Jack Latham; source
Another project by Jack is the Sugar Paper Theories project which was photographed in Iceland and looks following the 6 people who were given false memories when arrested by the police on the case of the murder of two men. He combined his own images in the project along with found aspects such as diary entries from the 6 accused, and archived images from the police. He wanted the images to follow a theme of misconception throughout, along with belief, authority, evidence and how photographic imagery displays these. The ultimate goal of this book was to make the viewer think that everything you look at is a document about this case.
Jack ended with some advice about being a freelance photographer; he said that we should always be flexible and do the ‘money-making jobs’ to allow us to spend time and money making the work we want to within out personal projects.
On Monday afternoon we had a wonderful artist talk from Manchester based photographer Sophie Lee. Most of Sophie’s projects are focused on domesticity, religion, education, which are all life paths that try and make sense of the world. She likes to focus on identity of places and people. Sophie creates her work by going to environments and reacting to these environments through visual arts such as video and photography.
- image from her project: Plain Jane, 2010.
Sophie first started her career by studying photography Manchester School of Art; graduating in 2010, this was where she created her project called “Plain Jane” inspired by 1962 film The L Shaped Room. In this project she took a character from the film who wasn’t overly important, and gave her a voice within her photographs using the camera as an audience for documenting a private performance. Based on this work she gave us the advice that is is a lot easier to speak about your work in hindsight to give it a true meaning.
After that she went into teaching for a short while, Sophie said she found this experience useful but it was difficult for her to make her own creative work while she was also responsible for 60 students. So after this she went on to create work through using Artist residences, I and many other students had never heard of artist residences before, she informed us that they were opportunities that invite artists away from their usual environment to make work, sometimes these are funded but they can also be unfunded. She has done these in the UK but also out of the UK in places like Iceland. These residences offered her time & space, a chance to build international networks, the opportunity to develop work in a new creative community and the option to collaborate with people within this creative community, and finally they offered her the chance to have the freedom to play with her creative ideas with little pressure. Sophie told us about how she felt like before she would create work and she would like to keep it very private until she had finished the project,;which is something that I relate to, however doing these residencies allowed her to feel like she could share work in progress and work with others in a creative environment.
Part of her talk she told us about her career as she went into being self employed, with this being my career path right now and hopefully my career path for the future as I continue my business I found this section very intriguing. She told us what it is like to be a artist and be self employed, and how most of her time is spent doing admin work like emails, dealing with expenses and social media and only 2-3 days a week will be spent as a creative. This is something that I have learnt also with my business; how being a photographer in the real world also comes hand in hand with the other aspects of running a business. Other than selling work she explained how her main form of income is from exhibitions, doing talks and teaching and commissioned work.
Sophie ended her talk with some advice for us all:
- Take all opportunities offered.
- Make the most out of the environment youre in now: build connections and use the free studios.
- Figure out what field of art you enjoy by trying out things, your creative niche won’t come to you.
- Don’t underestimate yourself and the experiences you have had.
Explore more of Sophie’s work here.