Reflections on Week Six and Seven

The course is starting to get pretty hectic now. Not just my thoughts, but those of my peers too. We all have jobs which have to be done and the course seems to be taking up all other waking hours. And no one is complaining. In conversations, we all agree we signed up for a challenge and that’s exactly we are getting.

Once one gets into a working life, it’s very, very easy to carry on doing pretty much the same thing year on year. Bills get paid, spare time gets enjoyed but it’s difficult to make big strides in one’s practice. I’m here to confront the challenge of making those big strides. I’m probably going to miss out on some sleep, but I can live with that.

I went to The Living Image in Falmouth. It was really worthwhile.

The highlight for me was Charlotte Cotton speaking about the Public, Private, Secret show she curated at the International Centre for Photography. I had mixed feelings about the show (never a bad thing) as there were some things that worked for me and some that really didn’t. Hearing Charlotte explain the backstory was extremely helpful. Seeing the exhibits again was also a measure of my own journey. It really felt that I seeing these exhibits with fresh eyes, or to be more accurate, better informed eyes.

I think the difference was that, rather than approaching the work to make a polar like/dislike decision, I was much more aware of the ideas informing the exhibits. I was better equipped to ask “What’s going on here?” and also in a better position to start to formulate some answers.

The presentations by the second year students of their research projects was also genuinely interesting. Seeing how they approached the projects and the quality and diversity of their work was very illuminating. Sarah Newton’s images formed from beach rubbish caught my attention, both for the originality of the work and also for the resonance with my own project on the changing world.

Today I submitted my Oral Presentation. I had rewritten numerous times, it had been reviewed by peers and Cemre. I had compared it against examples of best practice and course aims. It was time to let it go and move onto new activities.

I also presented the microproject that I had worked on with James. My task was to create an image or sequence of images created whilst in my car. The idea came from the well known Lee Friedlander work America By Car https://whitney.org/Exhibitions/LeeFriedlander

I looked up Friedlander’s work before I started my shoot. I decided that I would aim for a much more informal approach that Friedlander’s carefully composed images. My images would reflect the spontaneous nature of driving, of rapidly reacting to new situations .

The results are here http://chrisjerrey.com/pdf/drivingwednesday.pdf

They were well received by the webinar group and I felt that the task had been accomplished successfully.

So two pieces of work submitted, a symposium attended and a lot of collaborative work done. It has been very satisfying.