Semester 2 Week 14: Assessment Tutorial

Tuesday 7th May sees us Level 5 Students sit down with Sylvia and Sam for an assessment tutorial before the final hand in on the 9th May, this Thursday.

Sylvia has helpfully given us the info on the topics of conversation.

You will each have 10 minutes and in that time I will ask the following questions:

*What is your work about?
*What is your process?
*Where do you see your project going next year?

It’s all very relaxed so don’t worry about it. Think of it as practice for when you present/pitch to clients.


Sylvia Theuri

A powerpoint slide set is not required, looking at the capital letters in the note but I’ll jot some ideas down in this post as to what my answers might be.

What is your work about?

My work is about finding beauty in scenes and objects where it usually goes unnoticed or unappreciated. Most of my practice is a solitary effort with little collaboration and I venture to places that yield unexpected art. Whether it is a multi-storey car park or an empty factory, my photos generally don’t include recognisable human subjects. (except my street photography practice.). I also like to be contrary with my work, if many people dislike a sculpture, artwork or building I will find beauty in it, and this is true of brutalist buildings that I regularly photograph.

Solitude, peace, quiet, colour, patterns, sounds, light and shadow creating images and video that intrigue me. This year’s work has resulted in an exploration of my working life in a factory and how I’ve gone from being a 16 year old apprentice trying to get out of the factory as soon as possible, to a 50 year old manager with responsibility for the structure of the facility. It’s concerned with my presence in the factory environment and the interlinked experiences over the last 35 years.

What is your process?

My process is to visit places at times when others may not be around and examine the life of the area outside of the norm. I record images, video and sound during my shoots to help me capture the scene and contextualise it. Visiting locations in different seasons and times of day/night helps me find multiple images at he same location.

I use film cameras 35mm and medium format as well as full frame digital cameras, sometimes simultaneously. I like to experiment with a shot and see what works best. For film photos, I develop and print at home if it is black and white, and at university if it’s colour.

I also experiment with techniques that I come across in the course of a day on the net, in books or from other artists. Light painting, camera obscura, pinhole cameras, cyanotype, and even physical manipulation of the film negatives and prints in the darkroom.

I document my work and investigations onto a blog and instagram feed with some making its way to my youtube channel. I tend to carefully record settings, results and even cataloguing of the negatives to make it easier for myself in the future. It may come across as anally retentive or obsessive, but if I create a good print in an enlarger, I like to know I can recreate it using the same equipment and similar settings to the previous time.

Where do you see your project going next year?

This is. a tricky one for me as a part time student. My other coursemates will be starting Level 6 (final year) when they return in September ’24 and will need to be thinking about their projects’ direction and future. As a part time student though I will not be progressing to Level 6, I’ll be staying on Level 5 to complete the second module. This is the module that my current colleagues have done this year photographing a product for ASOS style page, images of a music artiste or band from BIMM and some work with the glass and ceramics course.

As I’ll be completing this work, my project work will likely take a back seat in terms of the level 6 side of the degree. I will not sit on my laurels however, and intend to continue the level of shooting that I have been achieving this year. I’ve shot lots of film and digital this year, some of it, like the Shutdown series might continue on in the background. It has been something I’ve done for many years and isn’t a recent practice. More that recently I’ve learned how to verbalise the work and to discuss it in the language of art.

For my level 6 which I will begin in Sept/Oct 2025 and take two years to complete, unless I go full time which would require a redundancy or sacking event from my work. I’ll continue developing my practice extra-curricular and investigate other places, methods and types of photographs that I can make.

Post Meeting Update

After sitting down with Sylvia and Sam this morning I can report that I mentioned almost everything from the above post, to ensure that it all got across. Sam brought up an idea for the continuation of the Factory photos project after I had mentioned maybe doing some abstracts in the light, he suggested that I might find a camera from back in the day when I started working at the company. He mentioned that it might be interesting to have photographs made on a camera from the time I started and see what the characteristics of the camera and lens provides in terms of style of photograph.

After researching cameras that were released in 1989 I found that the Sure Shot Zoom XL is an option. I know that I’ve seen one of these before somewhere, I think maybe my in-laws had one, as I remember the remote control which is stored in the bottom of the camera.

I’ve got a Canon SureShot Max that I bought off eBay a few years ago after my brother lost my original from when I was around 17 but this was a bit after the starting at work. Instead I’ve just bought this off ebay and will see if it works properly when it arrives.

On top of this idea, we talked about the contents of the year next year and how it might play out with a larger number of students in the group. I mentioned that aside from the larger number it would be a good opportunity to get involved with a new group, network and work with a different set of people.

Once we’d discussed this the time was up and it was time to make my way back home to get on with prepping my submissions and ensuring that I’ve uploaded everything in good time for the hand in date.

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