Friday, 23 July 2010

Assignment one is on its way

A day in the life of...Joan Florence Grant Short

Its always a relief to have an assignment posted off, but equally I get really nervous too. And this time I'll have to wait until I get back from my hols before I get the feedback!

Struggling to find the creative inspiration and setting unrealistic targets resulted in a frustrating period before commencing this assignment. I needed to find a subject that I had an interest in and felt emotionally involved with so that the day would have specific intention.

The subject I chose was someone whose day is sedate. I was compelled to photograph how challenging ‘life’ can be with the restrictions of immobility, lack of space and choices. Ending your days in a nursing home conjures up a whole host of anxieties and fears, for many people. By exploring these myths and realities of life in a nursing home, my own prejudices are likely to be challenged.

I chose a subject that I have a personal connection with rather than an unfamiliar subject. I am intrigued to see whether photographing a family member rather than stranger affects the images taken and whether any emotional connections are evident. Perhaps I would need to carry out a further study with a ‘stranger’ to properly assess this.

In addition, I wanted to continue utilising my photography as a means of coming to terms with the death of my mum, as it had successfully done throughout the period of illness prior to this. This assignment was the excuse I needed to spend time with my Nana, a nostalgic journey to explore this new dynamic in our relationship.

The ten images I have selected for this assignment are uploaded here in my portfolio on the OCA website. I have submitted these images to my tutor both on disc but also as a photobook.  I am aware from recent discussions on the flickr OCA forum that photobooks are not necessarily the favoured approach for submission and I can understand why. But I have found it a really helpful way for me to present my images and accompanying text in an organised format. I find it a useful and enjoyable exercise in developing my design skills and to showcase my images in a professional manner. Strangely and I don't know why this is, I am also more able to critically appraise my own photos in a book format rather than loose prints. For assessment however, I will need to rethink.

For this assignment I have produced two versions, one for assignment submission and this one below for my own purposes (I've worked out how to embed my photobook - yipee!!). The difference between the two were more experimental formatting in this version and I also included more than the ten images stipulated for the assignment.

In terms of feedback, I will have to wait until after the break .... while we search for sun ... which is a bit annoying, but hey ho I'll get over it - lol ! 


  1. wonderful images Penny - well done. I shot my 'Day in the Life' in a lap dancing club so very different! : )

  2. A very moving set! And I like the book format, something I have started doing more of.

    You might find this interesting - A Mirrored Memory

  3. Hi Helen. Thank you for the comments. Do you have your lap dancing club photos online? It sounds intriguing - I'd love to have a look at them - must have been a real eye-opener. You did very well gaining access to such a place too!

    Thanks Duncan for the comments and also the link. What a good find. I have checked it out and you quite rightly point out the relevance. I think the human condition is to be intrigued by 'before and after' type shots and that also goes for the ageing process.