After submission of the draft assignment on 9th February (see here) I had taken my ‘draft’ set of photographs to a meeting of OCA Thames Valley group on 15th February (see here) My tutor sent me interim notes on my draft Assignment on the 18th February which gave me time to further reflect on my concept for the Assignment, and the response from fellow students, which I emailed to my tutor (see here)
Our video discussion of the Assignment was on 21st February and a PDF of the report can be accessed below. The report also includes notes on our discussion of preparation for formal Assessment and I will write on this in a separate blog post:-
We discussed the assignment in depth and the formative feedback is quite detailed so now I will focus on what seem core aspects.
Beginning with positive encouragement:-
Effective images, technically no issues – through selection and attention to wide vistas and closer details, the series draws you into this intriguing site….. the areas of water, butted to green then to dust, the way the ground almost looks as if it has sunk (I imagine due to a reduced water mass?) add to this undertone of peculiarity, surrealism.
We discussed book design at length – based on my draft Blurb PDF and another thought I’d had about an altered book given that I have several copies of “War of the Worlds”. We agreed that the altered book idea should be one for the future as this would need more experiment and planning and could be a Level 3 Project. I was reminded that the front cover is also an entry to my portrayal of the place – the viewer is standing on the threshold. This links with my tutor’s comments on images which capture whole trees – they still work, “ … but it feels a little odd, pristine or overworked”; an image taken further back might allow the eye to wander more.
Great that I have developed a title, “The Eve of the War” and conceptual umbrella for the work – but what war am I referring to and why? The title seems too heavy for the tone of the images themselves; use the images as a guide to what is really being communicated.
The links to climate change seem tenuous as they link to the story rather than this particular place. When I had taken my draft images to the OCA Thames Valley Group meeting on 15th February I had received positive feedback on the whole but comments indicated some confusion regarding my narrative around my choices, what point of view was I taking and how that could be affecting the sequencing of my images.
My tutor suggested I could extend the parameters of the site and look for other images to provide visual counters between, say, density and sparseness; also visual echoes and others which allude to the idea of liminality which had occurred to me .
- Allow my images to speak to me and coalesce into a firmer concept which can be vocalized. I have had one attempt at writing a more focused artist statement (see here) which had some positive responses from fellow students, but am still not satisfied that it entirely captures my perception of the Common. I’m hoping I will be clearer once I have looked through all the images again.
- Words such as other-wordly; uncanny; surreal can point towards a liminal landscape which can provide a site for the imagination, for stories; provide thresholds between past, present, future, fantasy
- Do some reading around liminal spaces and write a short blog post. My tutor has sent me a PDF of a Journal Article “Walking the wateryscape: Exploring the liminal “ by R. Keating et al (2012) together with an access link to Journal of Arts & Communities Volume Numbers 1-2.
- Re-consider the front cover image, placement of the title and typeface. And give a rationale for choices.
- Reconsider the title; match this with the images. I have chosen images which appeal to me; what is it about them and what are they saying to me? Listen to them.
- The margins are at risk of being too narrow; give more space if in doubt unless working with a flat binding.
- The images merit a larger book – a Blurb lay flat book would be good and worth the extra cost.