Lectures, Workshops and Briefings
I found each of the briefings as gripping as the other, because this is when I can really start to brainstorm ideas for theme and get cracking on the project. The most daunting of the briefings was in the Image Making Unit, as we had little time to choose which route to take and we was given so much information to take in.
The most useful workshop was when we went into the studio to try our hands at still life and Vanitas, if it wasn’t for this my last unit would have taken a very different direction, as I used to find still life boring and dull. The most scary workshop was in the Environment unit where we had to go out and go up to people on the streets and ask to take their portraits, I lacked confidence but I went for it, and got turned away on numerous occasions but the ones that did say yes, I found the outcome successful and pleasing. A series didn’t emerge because my ‘methodology’ was to take the photo as quickly as I could and then run, because of this they aren’t visually accurate, but all the same I am still pleased with what I managed to achieve on that day.
What is a photograph? Was the first lecture, and the most gripping, it was a brilliant kick start into the photography course, I remember Hugh Grant’s and Justin Bieber’s mug shots being used to enforce the idea that a photograph can be used as proof, as what is true. Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadins image from Yohji Yamamoto’s catalogue (1999) is the most memorable photo, I can see the models horrifying expression. The colours and the shapes in this photo reminded me of the De Stijl design movement. Gustave Le Grey’s forest scene was a really beautiful photograph, I never looked into him more than what we saw in the lecture, but I would like to. Anna Mendieta’s Silueta series is one that we slightly touched on in a lecture and seminar, but I have never understood it fully.
Thomas Ruff and Yousuf Karsh are two photographers who I found most interesting from the lectures in the Identity unit, especially Yousuf Karsh’ photograph of Winston Churchill, and how Karsh snatched Churchill’s cigar from his mouth to achieve the desired photograph.