I got the feedback on Assignment Two just over a week ago, but hadn’t had an opportunity, until now, to record reflections in here. Some of the opening words caused initial apprehension; ‘... you may be disappointed ...’ and ‘... to be quite honest ...’ plus ‘...I’m really struggling ...’ didn’t augur well for what might follow. But when the latter phrase led into ‘... to think of suggestions to improve upon this ...’ and the words ‘... fantastic piece of work ...’ came shortly after, I realised I was being led slightly down the garden path!! Thanks, Jesse! I’ve broken with the normal code of modesty and quoted because, let’s be honest, that sort of feedback doesn’t come too often so ‘what the hell’ let’s get out the trumpet and blow it!
There are, of course and despite the intro, a few good suggestions e.g. some other lines of research, some interesting angles on the design, and a comparison that I like – with Edgar Martins’ night landscapes on beaches http://www.edgarmartins.com/ (‘The Accidental Theorist’ project). I’ve seen and enjoyed Martins’ work before, including some of the beach images, but I hadn’t made this connection. And I hadn’t really studied him - I need to look more closely.
One other useful thought has come to my mind as a result of this positive feedback. Looking back over my studies with OCA, I have consistently got this sort of response (maybe not quite so glowing!!) when I’ve been working in this sort of ‘controlled’, ‘studio-like’ manner – strong but controlled lighting. Way back in ‘Art of Photography’ – photographing a queen scallop shell for the ‘lighting’ assignment and the ingredients of ‘flapjack’ as a kind of still life image, for example. The Martins’ images have a kind of ‘still life’, constructed look about them. I do enjoy shutting myself away and playing around with compositions, lighting, framing, and I wonder whether – further down the line at Level Three, for example – it might be interesting to explore ‘conceptual still life’, which I guess is what this book cover amounts to.
Really encouraging to get good feedback; I’m definitely not disappointed; now on to Assignment Three, which is a ‘Photo Story’ or ‘Photo Essay’. I’m going to Paris Photo week after next, which might well turn out to be the subject matter; but I don’t have the time to work through exercises first. So it might be a case of capturing the images first – my take on the experience - and then structuring the story some weeks later.