352MC Professional Photographic Practice – Final Proposal

­­Coventry University BA (Hons) Photography

Professional Photographic Practice: 352MC                                                                   

FINAL PROJECT PROPOSAL


Student: Holly Constantine                                                      Date: 04/05/2015

 

 1.TOPIC / TREATMENT & AUDIENCEA brief description of the project you will be carrying out including the methodology you will undertake, the presentation strategy you aim to employ, and the context for which you intend to create the work.The themes that I will be looking at throughout this project include: memory, reminiscence, reconnection, association, and landscapes.For this project, I want to go back to my photographic roots by focusing on the area of Landscapes. My underlying inspiration and influence for my love of landscape photography stemmed from the relationship I had with my (deceased) Grandpa and the numerous family holidays we experienced in the Lake District. Through the development of my project, I have now deviated away from the original plan of reconnecting to my Grandpa by revisiting different places within the Lake District that I associated with some of my personal memories I shared with him. Instead, enhancing the idea of reconnection, this project has now involved me walking down paths that I experienced with him, allowing me to not only (physically) retrace my Grandpa’s steps, but to also recall the memories I associated with the original journey.(The paths that I plan on revisiting within the Lake District include those that go around/up: Buttermere, Haystacks, Latrigg, The Langdales, Loughrigg Tarn, and Surprise View)Re-walking these paths that hold a personal memorial significance within the Lake District, will provide me with the opportunity to create visual representations of my personal memories (and the process of remembrance) through photographing the path that I not only associate with the memories, but that has also triggered the recollection of these memories. (The paths that I will photograph will essentially act as a pathway to the past through initiating my process of remembrance). In relation to the composition of these pathway images, I will photograph them using a “middle-of-the-road” aesthetic which, through the perspective this style provides (due to its incorporation of leading lines), enhances the ideology of journeying towards a particular destination, and could therefore be used to symbolize the idea of travelling down this pathway to the past. I also plan on experimenting with varying compositions of this particular “middle-of-the-road” technique (through adjusting the horizon of the path to be situated towards the bottom, middle, or top of the image), and will decide on the particular technique that will provide a balanced perspective between the pathway and the landscape, to equalize their importance within the image. Also, with regards to the memory aspect of this project, I am planning on including the use of accompanying creative text in order to document and display the memories I recall; this will enhance the accessibility for the viewer by providing them with textual context, which will allow them to achieve a greater understanding of the project.Relating to the research for this project, as you may be aware, for my Symposium, I looked at theories surrounding remembrance and reconnection through the use of landscape images as memory triggers. Throughout the Symposium module, I was therefore introduced to a number of academic and photographic resources that has provided me with relevant information that applies to the overarching themes of my Final Major Project, which I will spend time revisiting, in order to aid the academic contextualization of my project. (For example, the case studies I analyzed within my paper (Ann Chwatsky and Mikael Levin) provided me with ideas surrounding ways to best represent memories visually (increasing the viewer’s accessibility to a subjective and personal project), whilst the general research regarding the broader topic of memory has provided me with a theoretical understanding associated with the personal reasons behind this projects creation). In addition to this, through the participation in one-to-one and group tutorials with a number of university tutors and visiting practitioners, as well as independent research, I have been introduced to a wide range of photographers, artists and academic resources that I feel will be beneficial to reflect upon for the development of my project. This research will be categorized into different section depending on their content, (for example, “Academic”, “Location”, “Photographic”, “Technical”, “Representation of the Land”, “Personal” and “Equipment and Editing Software”), which, through the quality of the resources I will look at, should allow me to gain inspiration and information in terms of the photographic and technical development of my project (including different techniques and methodologies that I could experiment with), whilst also allowing me to gain an understanding regarding how to create a contextualized piece of work that would be both engaging and accessible to the viewer (especially with regards to personal aspects portrayed). These resources that I plan on researching into can be found below (excluding the resources that I gained from my Symposium module):

  • Land Matters by Liz Wells
  • A History of Looking by Nicky Bird
  • Land Art Movement
    • Susan Derges (Interview)
    • Jem Southam (Interview)
  • Iain Sinclair Interviews
  • Spectral Soundscapes: Exploring Spaces of Remembrance Through Sound by Iain Foreman
  • David Foster’s “Thoreau’s Country: Journey Through A Transformed Landscape”
  • “Photography, Archive And Memory” (In “Photographies” Journal) by Karen Cross An Julia Peck
  • Four Fields by Tim Dee
  • Power Places by Joseph Wilcox
  • The Pond by John Gossage
  • Paul Gaffney
  • The Unforgetting by Peter Watkins
  • Oublier, The Missing and Sectarian Murder by Paul Seawright
  • On This Site by Joel Sternfeld
  • This Must Be The Place by David Campany
  • Motherland by Simon Roberts
  • Here to There by Alec Soth
  • William Eggleston
  • The Road Not Taken by Bobby Mills
  • Justin Partyka
  • Fay Goodwin
  • Stephen Vaughn
  • Edgar Martins
  • Paul Graham
  • George Miles
  • The Marshes by Samuel Wright
  • Camera Work by Alfred Stieglitz
  • Roaming by Todd Hido
  • Impressions by Leeming and Paterson
  • Reconstructing the View by Mark Klett and Bryon Wolfe
  • Instant Light by Andrey Tarkovsky
  • Richard Long (composition)
  • Elina Brotherus (Suites Francaices 1)
  • It for Other by Duncan Campbell
  • Gary Synder
  • Edward Thomas
  • The Old Ways by Robert Macfarlane
  • Wanderlust: A History Of Walking by Rebecca Solnit
  • Alfred Wainwright
  • Flicktion
  • The Kaddu Wasswa Archive
  • The Bowery in Two Inadequate Descriptive Systems by Martha Rosler
  • Karen McCarthy Woolf
  • David Rule
  • Hamish Fulton
  • Richard Long (text)
  • Border Country, The Guide, and Homes and Gardens by Melanie Friend
  • Patrick Keiller’s “London Polling Day 1992” and “Robinson in Space”
  • Jane And Louise Wilson
  • Ann Chwatsky
  • Mikael Levin
  • Rachel, Monique by Sophie Calle
  • The Dad Project by Briony Campbell
  • Photoshop Editing Techniques
  • Daniel Campbell Blight
    • Sidsel Christensen, Philipp Dorl, Dominic Hawgood, Eugenia Ivanissevich, Mandukhai Kaylin, Agata Madejska, Joanna Piotrowska, Thomas Popé and Tereza Zelenkova (whoever is relevant)
  • Kate McMillan
  • Darren Harvey Regan
  • Joseph Kosuth

As suggested above, this research will also provide me with a wide range of different techniques that I can experiment with in order to see whether they could be used to represent particular concepts or overarching themes throughout my project. These particular experiments might include more “creative” alterations of the work (such as deliberate blurring, double-exposures, Ted Leeming and Morag Paterson’s “Impressions” technique, and Todd Hido’s “Roaming” technique, etc.), which I will experiment with in order to see if they could symbolize some of the underlying memory topics I will explore throughout my project (for example, the fading of an individuals memories). As a part of the methodology of the project, I will also obtain and search through some of Grandpa’s old photographs and letters that, if I decide to use them for my final outcome, will enhance the projects theme of reconnecting and revisiting places and things in the past, through the addition of an archival aspect. (Taking this into consideration, through the development of this project, I will experiment with varying styles of recreation – for example, a “standard” recreational shot, a manipulated “double-exposure” technique, and the use of Mark Klett’s and Bryon Wolfe’s “Reconstructing the View” methodology – which could be used to enhance the idea of reconnecting to things in the past). Throughout this project, I have also made the conscious decision to document the process of revisiting these places by taking polaroid snapshots of the experience and collecting different items (such as receipts from different hotels and car parks, as well as natural materials from the different locations), in order to showcase the methodology behind the project as a way of enhancing the personal reasons behind its creation. Another experimental aspect that I am considering completing throughout the development of my project, is the creation of ambient noise soundscapes (found within these revisited paths), as well as holding an interview with my Dad (to discuss the personal memories we have of Grandpa and those that we associate to the places I have chosen to document within my project), which the audience can listen to whilst viewing my work, in order to create a tool that allows them to immerse themselves, and gain a greater understanding, of my personal, documented memories. Finally, another piece of experimentation that I am considering is the use of a “statically” shot video in order to represent varying aspects of the landscape that I am documenting, which, with the use of accompanying ambient soundscapes and the possible use of the interview with my Dad, could provide the viewer with an immersive piece that allows them to gain a greater understanding, of my personal, documented memories.

After conducting all of this research and the experimentations, I will then select a presentation strategy I wish to employ (which may include a number of different aspects, such as text), in order to present a more comprehensive project that will increase the viewer’s accessibility and understanding. Although this project is incredibly personal, and as I have made the conscious decision to produce this piece of work, I personally feel that the presentation of my piece should reflect the fact that I am embracing the sharing of my story. As a result of this, I am considering more “open” exhibition displays (such as, a triptych that will incorporate collected items, a photograph, and a piece of accompanying text, as well as a “path” installation piece created from the collected material and accompanying text, which leads to a large photograph of the landscape mounted on the wall). However, this presentation will be carefully considered in order represent the overarching themes and concept of my project, whilst also potentially highlighting the methodology I applied (which is also a major part of the projects concept). As this particular project will be very personal, I also want to create a final piece that is interesting in aesthetics, which could be used to engage the viewer’s attention and immerse them within the piece, as well as providing the viewer with information to enhance their contextualized understanding regarding the collection. Bearing this in mind, as my project continues through stages of development, options regarding the presentation of my project will continue to evolve.

 

 2. SKILLS AND RESOURCE REQUIREMENTSIdentify the skills you think you will need to develop, and the resources you envisage being required to enable a successful resolution of your idea within the given time and theme.Some of the skills I think will need to be developed, or used, throughout this project include:

  • Writing skills – critical, reflective and creative
  • Photographic skills – technical and creative (including opening myself up to experimentation)
  • Audio recording skills
  • Research skills (information retrieval)
  • Critical reflection skills (self-evaluation and self-criticism)
  • Time management
  • Verbal and visual communication (to a proposal review board and specified market)
  • Independent study

The resources I will need to create my project include:

  • Camera – Canon 5D Mk II
  • Lenses – Tamron SP 10-24mm lens (wide-angle)
  • Medium Format Camera – Mamiya 7
  • 120mm colour film
  • Tripod
  • Polaroid Camera (and Film)
  • Edirol R09 Collection (including headphones)
  • 32GB Compact Flash Cards
  • Access to archived photos and materials (i.e. Grandpa’s Old Photographs)
  • Access to the library and internet – required for research
  • Laptop – for methodological and developmental written work
  • Travel – to, from and between desired destinations (in the Lake District)
  • Accommodation at desired destinations (in the Lake District)
  • Appropriate clothing and equipment protection for varying weather conditions
  • Access to a company that develops colour film (e.g. One Vision) – required for development of film from the trips
  • Access to a company that provide a professional printing service (including text that could be mounted on the floor) – possibly required for the final exhibition piece
  • Frame – possibly required for the final exhibition print

Please note: This project will be primarily self-funded (with some financial assistance provided by my parents in regards to travelling and accommodation) and will, therefore, mainly include the use of resources that I own or can get access to through the Media Loan Shop.

 

 3. TIMETABLEPlan how you will use the study time allocated for this Module. This would include dates for tutorials, seminars, workshops, shooting, processing, printing, editing, mounting etc. (You are advised to build in a one-week buffer zone – i.e. have everything ready a week before the deadline, as something always goes wrong..!)August:

  • Brainstorm of Final Major Project ideas

September:

  • Briefly plan Final Major Project idea

October:

  • One-to-One discussion with Matt Johnston
  • Saturday18th to Sunday 19th October 2014 – First trip to the Lake District (as a way of getting my bearings)

November:

  • Research for Symposium (that will be beneficial for my Final Major Project)

December:

  • Research for Symposium (that will be beneficial for my Final Major Project)

January:

  • Research for Symposium (that will be beneficial for my Final Major Project)
  • Write drafts of proposals
  • Saturday 31st January to Sunday 1st February 2015 – Second trip to the Lake District

February:

  • Final Draft for Symposium – 3rd February 2015
  • (Focus mainly on Symposium)
  • Friday 13th to Sunday 15th February 2015 – Third trip to the Lake District
  • Research into photographers/artists work

March:

  • Deadline for Symposium – 2nd March 2015
  • Thursday 12th to Saturday 14th March 2015 – Fourth trip to the Lake District
  • Research into photographers/artists work
  • Development and experimentation of work
  • 21st – 28th March – New York!

April:

  • Friday 3rd to Monday 6th April 2015 – Fifth trip to the Lake District
  • Saturday 11th – Sunday 12th April 2015 – Sixth trip to the Lake District CANCELLED
  • Development and experimentation of work
  • Edit photos, write creative writing pieces, consider presentation methods
  • Decide on final presentation method (and the one you will display within the exhibition)

May:

  • Write up blog posts
  • Write final reflection
  • Organise everything on blog
  • DEADLINE – WEDNESDAY 20TH MAY 2015 AT 9AM

 

 4. OBJECTIVES AND OUTCOMESWith reference to the Assessment Requirements (see below) and Intended Learning Outcomes for this Module, specify what you intend to achieve by the end of this project and try and summarize what you hope to have learnt. This section should also include a sentence describing how you want your audience to respond to your work – how, ideally it would be appreciated and understood.Within this module I have many aims and objectives that I intend to achieve through the creation of this Final Major Project. Personally, I would like to create a final project outcome that I can be proud of. I want to create a piece of work that will allow me to develop my professional independence through the defining and contextualization of my work within contemporary practices and ideas, whilst also producing high quality photographic material. This will then allow me to include the work within my portfolio, diversifying the evidence of my range of photographic skills, which will increase the professionalism of my portfolio and therefore, hopefully, my employability.Another personal aim that I would like to achieve throughout this project, relating back to the context and reasoning behind the projects creation, is that I want to be able to experience a strong sense of reconnection to my (deceased) Grandpa. However, in terms of my specified audience, and how I want them to respond to this piece of work, I feel like my project will be accessible to a wide audience through the fact that it is exploring a relatable subject area: memory. I therefore want to create an immersive exhibition piece that will allow the audience to empathize with this feeling of connection, by allowing them to connect to me through the memories that my work displays. With this being said, I also want to make this immersive and empathetic piece reflective by enhancing the audience’s understanding of the process of recollection (e.g. faded memories become clearer through the introduction to a memory trigger). This will then allow the audience to apply this newly gained knowledge to their personal remembrance by encouraging them to consider their own memories (and memory triggers) that will later allow them to reconnect to their own lost loved ones. (To make this project more accessible to the viewer, I essentially want to focus the project more on the generalised act of remembrance, as this will later allow them to understand the more personal aspect of reconnection).(These aims will be achievable through the choices I make in determining the outcome of my project, as I will be considering them through the developmental process.)In regards to summarizing what I want to have learnt by the end of this module, the main skills I wish to enhance are research skills (information retrieval), critical reflection skills (self-evaluation and self-criticism), time management and independent study as these are the main transferable skills that I think I will require if I am to pursue the future career option that I am now currently considering (a Wedding Planner). Throughout the creation of this project, I would also like to challenge one of my main weaknesses (experimentation), by opening myself up to forms of experimentation without concerning myself with any possible negative outcomes that could be associated with it (i.e. ideas that the specific technique could be deemed inappropriate for what I want to achieve). Finally, I would also like to try and enhance my verbal and visual communication skills (to a proposal review board and specified market) throughout this project, as I feel that these will be required of me, on numerous occasions, in future careers and projects. 

 

Remember the Assessment Requirements:

  • A Body of Work appropriately formatted and presented. Produced in relation to the Project Proposal, the creation of The Body of Work should be realized through a rigorous process of critical research and creative experimentation. The final outcome should evidence ability to produce lens-based work of the highest technical quality, conceptual rigor and critical awareness. What constitutes a ‘Body of Work’ is purposefully defined loosely here. This should be self-determined in consultation with the module tutors and be concretely addressed in the Project Proposal. For example, it may be a series of 20 images, a video-work, or a sound and image installation. Whatever form the Body of Work takes, it should be conceptually resonant with the topic explored and represented in the work.
  • Evidence of Research and Development, a Blog Booker summary of your blog, along with a paper copy and a digital copy of your updated Project Proposal. This should clearly illustrate the development of your strategy for making work and the research, development and experimentation underpinning it. The Research and Development may be comprised of blog entries, workbook, contact sheets, work-prints, tests etc.
  • A Reflective Report no longer than 800 words. Through this piece of writing, the strengths and weaknesses of the methods used to create the final work should be considered. In addition, this critical analysis should consider how the work may function within the context(s) it was created for and how it relates to contemporary photographic practice. The development of this piece of writing should evolve through consultation with the module tutors. Draft and redraft, and bring these drafts to tutorials for feedback.
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