Monthly Archives: November 2009

Peter Dench visit


Peter Dench came to visit the other week and I really appreciated him coming to talk to us. I had previously been emailing Peter about a year ago because of some previous work so I was aware of him and his work. When I discovered Peter’s work, I couldn’t enough of it. I love the way he tackles some very serious subjects but gives them a comical, quirky twist. I think Peter has a very good decisive moment and it shows in his images because you can tell that if he hadn’t shot certain images at the certain times he did they wouldn’t work as well.

Peter Dench’s presentation and talk inspired me a lot and made me think about what to and how to photograph successfully. He spoke about how he got the chances to photograph by attending events and going places were people wouldn’t feel awkward with a camera around them. But at these events Peter wouldn’t focus on the main subject of the event, he would focus on his own chosen subject and search out what he was looking for. This inspired me to go looking for events and looking for interesting subjects to photograph.

 I love the way Peter goes out and searches for his ideas. He has been and photographed some things that others wouldn’t even think of doing, things such as a midget convention and a nudist tour, he is that passionate and involved in his work he was even joining in with the nudists. I really did enjoy the visit from Peter Dench and it inspired me a lot to think about my work. I’m happy I got the chance to meet Peter, he was so down to earth and easy to talk too, I’m definitely going to try keep in contact with him seeing as he has helped me a lot with my work over the past year.


Kakera – A piece of out life

I went to watch the latest installment of Coventry University’s East Asian film society, the film that was on was ‘Kakera’ – ‘A piece of our life’. I didn’t know what to expect because i don’t have a big interest in asain films but i thought i’d give it a go.

My general view of the film was that it portrays different kinds of relationships, not only the stereotypical boy/girl relationships but also girl/girl relationships aswell. The story follows a young university student called Haru and shows her in many differerent situations that life throws at her. She starts off in a dead-end relationship with a character called Riyota, who is quite abusive and very blatently with another women. I feel that the film is very subtle but still puts across the point its trying to make, things like tension, characters and music all contribute to this.

Haru’s character is then introduced to Riko, a bi-sexual prosthetics artist. They meet in a cafe and get on immediately but in a slightly odd way. Riko is very confident and talkative wereas Haru is shy and reserved. As Haru and Riko’s relationship develops, Haru’s relationship with Riyota deteriorates. I found it hard to understand why Haru was with Riyota in the first place, could he be over-possesive and not let her leave or could she genuinly love him and not want to leave him?

I believe Haru is a very shy, naive and innocent character that seems to just get taken advantage of. When she finally leaves Riyota for Riko, we think that the relationship is going to be perfect, and it was to start of with. It wasn’t untill Riko started getting jealous and possesive, like Haru’s previous relationship with Riyota, in the end Haru leaves Riko. My overall thoughts came down to the contrast of possesion and freedom. Haru went from an unhappy relationship to one were she thought would be better but ended up being just as unhappy as before, therefore leaving me with the thought of, is it better being alone and independent?

I surprised how much i liked this film seeing as east asian films don’t really interest me but i will definatly be looking out for the next films.

Further ideas for assignment 1

Me and another class mate did a mind map together to bounce some ideas around. We got a lot of ideas from each other and it helped me think a lot more about what i want to do and what i could do.

I thought i’d post it so any other classmates could get some help aswell…


Gamma Funkula 12/11/09

Gamma Funkula presents Sub Focus & High Conrrast & more…

Didn’t get many up close photos because the place was SO busy but i got a few interesting ones…..


…and what do you do when theres a blackout, play guitar and play with torches!!!

My brother Joe

I had an assignment which was called ‘Homage to a precious object’, basically i had to produce some photos of any kind of object that is precious to me and try to portray to the veiwer how precious the object is.

I chose to photograph my little brother because he is precious to me and Im always taking photos of him so felt confident i could get some good images.

Here are a few digital shots Ive took so far:

Assignment 2- ‘Student Presentations’

‘Prepare a Short illustrated, 10 minute talk that ivestigates the working practices of your given practitioners and your given theme. This project enables you to to see, research and explore the work of a wide range of photographers/ artists and to consider links between their numerous bodies of work.’

My given practitoners were Larry Burrows, Roger Fenton, Don Mccullin and Paul Seawright and my given theme was motivation!

I started off my research all artists through computer work and library work. I found a couple of books in the university library and also some vhs and dvd resources, also i found that some of the artists and their own websites s this helped out alot with my research

.At first i found it hard to relate my artists and my theme but after a while the more i read into the artists the more i found out and found a way to link them.

The one difficulty i did have was with Paul Seawright, i found out a little about him but i could’nt find out anything about his history and his background, the things that made him choose photography, why he like studying photography, etc. In the end i found one way to link him and that was through what he was photography. like the others he was focusing on war, conflict and the atfermath. Paul had worked in places such as Belfast, Afgan, Africa and the 9/11 attacks. He did a serious of work about the war in Afghanistan which was called ‘Hidden’ and was commisioned by the Imperial War Museum London. Also he did a series of work called ‘Invisible Cities’ which focused on his four year work in Africa, this was published by the National Agency for Photography in Wales.

Don Mccullin was one of my favourite artists that i researched about and i found him quite interesting, i found his auto biography in the library and have recently started reading it. Don’s motivation came from when he went into the RAF and was put in the photography department, he was never any good at school becuase he had dyslexia, this also becmae a problem for him when he failed a test which meant he came out the RAF without an official photography degree. Like Paul he worked on ecological and man-made catastrophes such as war zones, aids epidemic, vietnam war, and northern ireland conflict. He was passionate about these subjects because he grew up in ireland so he was around to see the conflicts and violence, this fuiled his motivation and inspiration. He was a self taught photographer and studied by reading books and looking into artists that he like and inspired him. Don Mccullins moment came when one of the gang members he was friends with was invloved in a murder and because of the many photos he had shot previously of the gangs, The Observer published one of his images. He became very in demand and became very popular and famous. He was later refused access to shoot the Falklands war which lead to depression and him drinking. He later got fired from his job at The Sunday Times because a new publisher was in charge and took a dis-liking to him. After this he got into other jobs so he could continue to photograph and travel. Don Mccullin has won many awards and was even awarded a CBE in 1993.

Roger Fenton is  my next artists, i found his work a little old fashioned but then again what do i expect when he was around in the 1800’s, but i did find him interesting to research. He first of all studies with painter Charles Lucy then spent time in Paris with another artist called Paul Delaroche, Paul Delaroche was who first introduced Roger to photography and calotypes. Unkown to anyone Roger gave up paiting and studied a degree in law and became a solicitor, unkowingly again he went back into photography and started shootin civil engineers in Russia, a bridge suspension in Ukraine, landscapes and buildings in St Petersburg and Moscow and he did a large amount of work on the Royal family. Roger was assigned to the Crimean war in 1855 by publisher Thomas Agnew, there was alot of controversy over his photos because of the way Roger avoided taking pictures of dead, injured or mutilated soldiers, he was accused of maybe trying to glorify the war and make people think differntly of it. Unkowingly yet again, Roger Fenton stopped photographing in 1862, went back to working as a solicitor and apparently he never took another photo again, he died at the age of 50.

I found Larry Burrows work most interesting and i really liked his images. Like my other artists Larry covered violence in the middle east and fighting in Congo. He had alot of motivation which came from several things, first of all when he was younger he worked in the mines and after seeing the suffering and hatred of working down there this was said to give him the passion and courage for dangerous situations. Secondly he got a job at Life magazine and started of doing meaningless darkroom tasks, he was printing thousands of war photographs from some of the most famous WW2 photographers so he had alot of motivation and inspiration from seeing these images. Larry spent 9 years in Vietnam and was determined to see it through to the end and then photograph the coming of peace. His colleuges and other people beleived Larry would become cynical or immune to what he was seeing but it was quite the opposite, Larry became sensitive and worried about the morality of what he was doing. It wasn’t untill a mother of someone killed wrote a letter to him about how his work was making her deal with things because it made her feel comfortable and understand, this letter gave Larry a lot of relief and he continued to photograph. Even after Larry was told to go home and other photographers were sent to replace him, he kept going back because he was motivated to finish what he had started. Unfortunatly Larry died when a helicopter he was in was shot down over the Veitnam border.