I have just received back my Tutor’s formative feedback for my last assignment for the Art of Photography Course, assignment V, Narrative and Illustration.
Re-examining my work.
Tutor_report Shaun Mullins 512659 TAOP asst 5 V2
I enjoyed this project immensely, I found it very challenging and I learned a great deal from it. I had read some very useful books that helped with ideas of how to plan for this project, namely: Context and Narrative, by Maria Short, Basics Creative Photography, 02, AVA. Making Photographs, by Mike Simmons, Basics Creative Photography, AVA.
Throughout this project I kept referring back to the brief to be sure that I understood my assignment and feel confident that I met the brief.
The brief being to imagine that I have to illustrate a story for a magazine to include the cover to illustrate and several pages inside to include captions of any length to explain and link each picture. The cover picture will need some of the techniques of illustration that I have been experimenting with and the picture essay will be more of a narrative.
Any theme which has a narrative element could be a suitable subject for this project; so on first checking with my Tutor, I chose to use a ghost story by M.R. James as the Narrative to illustrate.
Having thus decided upon the story, I set about planning my photographs.
Reflections on my Tutors comments (see attached document).
My Tutor liked this image and comments that it was a good example of risk taking, although I must confess it didn’t occur to me at the time.
Perhaps it is a little stereotypical, I could perhaps have used a still-life image of the map and magnifying glass as an alternative. However, the third hand was intended to complement and make sense of the caption. ‘Oh, Parkins,’ said his neighbour ‘If you are going to Burnstow I wish you would look at the site of the Templars…’ Perhaps the third hand wasn’t needed.
A simple image that worked for linking the story.
Although it lacks a visual link to the last image (3) it is necessary to continue the story.
Unfortunately, I could not find a antique whistle as a convincing prop; so I had to make do with a wooden peg that we covered in dirt to make the object as ambiguous as possible.
I was very pleased with this image as I think that it gives an atmospheric feel to the story.
Probably my favourite image and was perfect for what I was looking for for the cover.
My Tutor thinks that this image could arguably have been left out of the narrative. My feelings is that as this project is a magazine story and the story is essentially about finding a whistle in a grave-yard and whistling up a ghost, I needed to include this image (identification) to help link image 5 (discovery) with the following image 9 (put to use). however, no two editors may agree the same outcome, therefor as a photographer, I would have at least covered myself having produced the image if an Editor had decided that he wanted it. In this case I was the Editor.
My Tutor feels that my friends pose appears to be a little over-acted, I think that this is a subjective opinion, the expression was intended to suggest someone tentively blowing through an unfamiliar object. It looks truthful to me; but I may be biased. The shadow effect however, appears to have worked as I wanted.
A simple image; but turned out to be trickier to achieve as my friend could only spare me limited time in the evening when it was already very dark.
It took a lot of pictures before I got this shot! I particularly like the wide open eye that I am always drawn to.
As with image 10 this photo was more of a challenge as I had already lost the light; so I had to use a speedlight in a soft-box and experiment with settings on my speedlight and camera to get the effect I was looking for, I then had to make some final adjustments in Lightroom.
The ghostly spirit takes form using bedsheets and rushes at the professor. I was happy with this final image, although I had to combine two images in to one in Photoshop to produce it.
A big thank you to my Tutor for his support and constructive comments.