I have just the results for this course after assessment

Demonstration of Technical and Visual Skills…………………..23
Quality of outcome………………………………………………………11
Demonstration of creativity……………………………………………23

Total  ………………………………………………………………………..58%

I am happy with this mark as it was a challenge to finish the course and I did struggle with motivation following the sudden illness and death of my mother between assignments 3 and 4.


The list of references that I consulted through out this course are shown below.

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Belan, M. 2013. Untitled. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 27 Jun 2013].

Bown, J. 2000. Faces. London: Collins & Brown.

Browne, M. 2012. Don’t zoom – MOVE! Focal Length Explained. Available at: [Accessed: 30 July 2013].

Bryce S. 2013. Sue Bryce Portrait | Australian Portrait Photographer of the Year 2011 & 2012. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 16 Sep 2013].

Caruana, N. and Fox, A. 2012. Basics Creative Photography. 1000 Lausanne: Ava Publishing SA.

Cazillo, G. 2012. 50mm Prime Lens is NOT a Portrait Lens. Available at: [Accessed: 30 July 2013]. 2013. Chippenham Folk Festival 2014. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 15 May 2013].

Cleghorn, M. 2012. Portrait photography. New York: Pixiq.

Colberg, J. 2014. Conscientious | Review: Beyond Caring by Paul Graham (Errata Edition). [online] Available at: [Accessed: 20 Mar 2014].

dcworld. 2013. 21 street photography tips from the professionals | Digital Camera World. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 15 Aug 2013].

Denison, S. (2014). Simon Denison Photography. [online] Available at: [Accessed 3 Oct. 2014].

DigitalRev TV. 2012. Street Photography Do’s and Don’ts. Available at: [Accessed: 15/08/2013].

Falconer, M. 2012. Why your five year old could not have done that. London: Thames & Hudson.

Fawcett, K. (2014). Europe’s Landscape Is Still Scarred by World War I. [online] Smithsonian. Available at: [Accessed 2 Oct. 2014].

Fusco / Magnum Photos, P. 1968. Robert Kennedy Funeral Train 1968. [image online] Available at: [Accessed: 15/05/2013].

Gampat, C. (2014). Bill Wadman’s Portraits in a Corner Series. [online] The Phoblographer. Available at: [Accessed 4 Sep. 2014].

Gee, M. 2014. 3am at The Gap. [image online] Available at:   [Accessed: 3 Apr 2014].

Gonzalez-Torres, F. 1990. “Untitled” (USA Today). [image online] Available at: [Accessed: 6 August 2013].

GowerLive. 2013. Swansea Tide Times. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 5 Sep 2013].

Graham, P. (2014). Paul Graham Archive. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Oct 2014].

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Hodge, S. 2012. Why your five year old could not have done that. London: Thames & Hudson.

Hunter, F., Biver, S. and Fuqua, P. 2007. Light–science & magic. Boston: Focal Press.

Kelby, S. 2010. The digital photography book Vol 2. [Berkeley, Calif.]: Peachpit Press.

Kelby, S. 2012. The digital photography book Vol 4. Berkeley, Calif.: Peachpit.

Kim, E. 2013. Eric Kim Street Photography. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 15 Aug 2013].

Lopez, N. PetaPixel. 2013. In Defense of Telephoto Lenses for Street Photography. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 13 Sep 2013].

Ltd, M. 2012. Battle Re-Enactment Photography. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 27 Jun 2013]. 2013. Magnum Photos Photographer Portfolio. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 27 Jun 2013]

McKenna F. PetaPixel. 2013. The Top 8 Reasons Why I’m a Big Believer in 35mm Lens Photography. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 15 Sep 2013].

Naryškin, R. 2012. Street Photography Tips for Beginners. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 15 Aug 2013].

Page, T. 1995. Tim Page’s NAM. New York: Thames and Hudson.

Pepper, T. and Beaton, C. 2004. Beaton portraits. London: National Portrait Gallery.

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Overall Reflection

I must admit this module has been a bit of a roller coaster for me. It has taken me 2 years to complete instead of the 1 that I had planned. Unfortunately, I lost my way a bit last year and let the course slip as I was finding it difficult to find someone to model for me or assignment 1. Looking back I should have taken the easier option and co-opted someone in the family but wanted to stretch myself by taking photos of someone I didn’t know that well.

Assignment 2 was one that I enjoyed completing and judging by the feedback from the tutor, was well received.

Assignment 3 was a really struggle as it coincided with a very busy period at work and meant that I could not devote the time required. Also, I felt that that the assignment was too big. 5 photos of 5 different buildings was a large task and I had difficulty in finding the variety of buildings to use as subjects.

Assignment 4; I enjoyed this assignment once I had settled on Gibraltar as the subject. It would have been better if I had used a location closer to home but I still believe I have achieved the aim of the assignment once I had better explained the photos. I do believe that the photos show the nature of Gibraltar and it’s people.

Again, I enjoyed assignment 5 as it was a very free format brief and allowed me to choose what I wanted to use as the assignment.

Overall, I can’t honestly say I have not really enjoyed doing this course. Pressure of work, combined with applying for a new job and some very difficult personal circumstances, I did struggle to complete the course. I consider ending my study at this course and accepting the Certificate instead of continuing to the full degree. But the module is done and I am preparing the photos for assessment in March. I pleased to have completed my third level 1 module and looking forward to starting the first level 2 course in January. Hopefully with a new job which will allow me more time to study.

Assignment 5 Reworked

I returned and retook the photos as planned. However, I could not get a satisfactory photo to replace my first image. Either the light was not good enough, the sun was in the wrong direction, it was misty or there was too much haze to see the motorway clearly. In the end, I gave up trying to replicate the original photo and took another from a slightly different location. This was similar in theme as there is a path through the grass with the motorway in the background. The path actually mirrors the motorway with a slight curve to the left then to the right. Overheard are 2 aircraft contrails adding to the theme of how man has changed the landscape; the contrails are changing the sky, the path is a temporary change which could become like the motorway, a permanent change.

Likewise with the seventh image, I could not get an image I was happy with to replace the original with. The best that one that I was able to take is shown below but I was not happy with the sunlit trees in the top right and lack of detail in the sky.

07a (Medium)In the end, I decided to re-crop the original image to remove the awkward patch of nettles that was noted in the feedback. This makes for a tighter image on the tree used as jumps with the path more in the background.

With the substitute photos, my submission will consist of the following images.

01a (Medium)02 03 0405-1 0607-b (Medium)08

Assignment 5 – Feedback and Reflection

I was particularly pleased with the feedback about the photo of the canal path.

I think there is potential in your visual sophistication too: the shot of the canal could easily be dismissed as a ‘pretty’ view of the English ‘countryside’, with its charming lighting and traditional composition, yet within the context of the other pictures, it is clear that you are presenting this as a man-made canal, yet reflecting a tension in how we relate to it as a ‘natural’ thing, through your visual strategy.

I had wanted to include this photo for exactly these reasons; it was a “pretty” view but fitted in with the context of the other photos. However, not all the photos were so well received.


As a rule, I suggest you take wider views with your landscape work (see below). But generally, you need to pay more attention here. Image 5 (Burial mound) is poor in this respect: although the foreground figure is important here, you really should include the entirety of the feature which is key to the narrative of the image. Not as much of a problem, but, no.7 could be a little better too – the clump of nettles in the centre of the foreground are on the edge of the frame awkwardly.

I agree with the comment the clump of nettles now that it has been highlighted. I had not noticed that they looked awkward in the frame until the feedback. The feedback about image 5, the burial mound, is the opposite to what I had decided when I made the crop. I had started off with the hill being shown fully in the photo but decided that it dominated the scene too much and cropped it so that it was not shown fully. Obviously this was the wrong decision and I will change the submission to the original.

With that said, you could be more dramatic too – the old (?) bit of the road in 02 could look really interesting going vertically up through the centre of the frame, with Stone Henge to the left and the 303 cutting along the bottom of the frame.

I had walked around the area before taking this photo and this was the only spot where I could see Stonehenge, the 303 and the old road. If I had moved to the right to get the road vertical as suggested, Stonehenge would have been hidden behind a clump of bushes. Moving further to avoid the bushes meant that the old road was hidden by the fence and a dip in the hill. Thus I was stuck to one spot to take the photo.


Using a tripod will help control depth-of-field better. With landscape work, if you are going to have out-of-focus areas, then there really should be a creative reason for this. Although there is some lens distortion in 08, you handle this relatively challenging scenario well, but in 01, the foreground is out-of-focus, and there is no obvious creative reason for this.

I will admit that I had not noticed the foreground being slightly out of focus in the photo. I was concentrating on the middle and background being in focus, forgetting to zoom in to check the foreground was sharp. The photo was taken at f8. I will return to the location and retake the photo with a greater depth of focus as I did with 08 which was taken at f22.

As to some lens distortion comment, I do not see that in the photo. When I processed the RAW file, I used the ACR lens profile lens correction.


Some of these things would be rectified with working with a wider angled lens. As I think I have mentioned before, longer lenses can be problematic as they create a distance between the photographer/viewer and the subject / scene and the effect the tension within the image. I don’t think your images are really too long in their focal length in this respect, but I definitely feel there is something lacking visually from the series as a whole and I think taking a slightly wider angle view would have helped here

I have checked the original files to see what focal lengths I had used.


01 75mm
02 47mm
03 24mm
04 10mm
05 24mm
06 55mm
07 24mm
08 24mm


All the photos, apart from 04, were taken using preferred lens, 24 – 105mm f/4L IS. I use this one in the main as I prefer the image quality compared to the other lens used a 10 – 22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM. The longest focal length I used was a75mm but as I am using an APS-C Canon 60d, that is an effective focal length of 120mm. This considerably longer than the effective focal length of 16mm for 04 or the 38mm of those taken at 24mm. This is a photo I will return to retake and will use a wider angle when I do.


My feeling is that this submission is a little torn, in a way: On the one hand, you have stuck strictly to the brief, keeping a context in mind, and on the other; you have explored contemporary practice and thought beyond the confines of a commercial context for your images.

I am a bit confused by this comment as I have tried to explore the topic whilst sticking to the assignment brief. To my mind the brief is just that, a brief to be followed whilst exploring within that. I have commented previously about how I have understood how some of the submissions have been accepted when they don’t meet the required number of photos or appear to stick to the brief in anyway. Again, I have made comments about my background being in NVQ assessing and verifying where the standards have to be covered by showing how you meet them. There is little latitude in assessing, you have either met them or you haven’t. This is something I will still have to work on for future course.

Assignment 4 – Reworked

I have added some captions to the photos to explain a bit more about why they represent Gibraltar as advised in the feedback to the submission.



01 (Large)

This is the first view of Gibraltar for many of the 6 million visitors to the Rock. Gibraltar airport is built between the North front of the Rock and Spain. North Front was the name of the former RAF camp visible in front of the aircraft wing.

02 (Large)Main Street – This area is the main shopping area in Gibraltar where local shops mix with international brands and English pubs. Jurys on the left is serving Chicken curry and LavAzza coffee. The Lalique shop is advertising that it is tax and duty free. This status is one of the main attractions to shoppers who cross the boarder from Spain or arrive by cruise liners for the day. The tourists added to the local population mean that Main Street is a lively and crowded area.

03 (Large)Mediterranean / street café life style. The shop on the left is called Dolce Vitae; Good Life. Those who live in Gibraltar enjoy a Mediterranean lifestyle with a strong British influence. The pub next to it is called the Royal Calpe. Calpe is one of the original names for Gibraltar. Again mixed with the word Royal in the name shows the British influence. This is continued with the pub serving a carvery with 3 roast meats; typical of many pubs in the UK

04 (Large)Gibraltar airport is unique in the world by having a runway that has both ends in the sea. Many airports of one end in the sea and the other onto land. The British Airways aircraft is lined up ready for take off at the Western end. This end is next to the marina. The apart from air, many tourists arrive by sea. Smaller boats moor in this marina while cruise liners have their own mooring area in the main harbour.05 (Large)Gibraltar consists of approximately 6 square miles but only 2 are habitable due to the slope of the Rock. Houses are built on the lower slopes of the Rock and are only accessible by climbing steps. Steps are quite synonymous with Gib as they are everywhere. Very few houses have gardens because of the lack of space so make use of small patios in front of the houses. The small Union flag an Gibraltarian flag painted on the wall are common sites reflecting the patriotism and close links to Britain.

06 (Large)Gibraltar has always been a Naval base ever since it’s capture by the Royal Marines in 1704. The HM Victualling yard dates from the time of King George III being built between 1799 and 1812. The yard is next to Rosia Bay, the only natural harbour in Gibraltar. It was to Rosia Bay that HMS Victory returned carrying the body of Lord Nelson after the battle of Trafalgar in 1805. Gibraltar has many historic building which are now used by Gibraltarian companies for diverse purposes.

07 (Large)View from the southern most point of Gibraltar at Europa Point looking north towards the Rock. The scene is dominated by 3 main points; The Rock, the Ibrahim al Ibrahim Mosque and the Union flag. Gibraltar was occupied by the Moors then the Spanish before it was captured by the British. The mosque is a reminder of the Moorish occupation. The Union flag shows the strong   links to Britain remain despite the independent nature of Gibraltar.

08 (Large)The sea water swimming pool at Camp bay is dominated by Parson’s Lodge battery on the cliffs above the bay. The battery is a reminder that the peaceful scene today was not always so.

09 (Large)Although Gibraltar is a crowded and noisy place, it is still possible to escape from the crowds and have a quiet moment. Under the sunny and welcoming exterior there is a big substance abuse problem in Gibraltar. In the main this is alcohol abuse but there is a significant drug culture as well. At one stage in the 1990’s it was said that there were over 150 bars and pubs. That and the duty free status of Gibraltar means that alcohol is very cheap compared to Britain.

10 (Large)More steps leading up to upper rock. These steps are called Devil’s Gap Road even though they are not a road in the normal sense. Also know as Union Jack Steps or Referendum Steps, they were painted in 1967 after the Gibraltar sovereignty referendum. The referendum was held to establish if the population wanted to remain under British sovereignty or change to Spanish. The results was an overwhelming no to Spanish sovereignty with just 44 people voting for that against over 12,000 for remaining British. The steps were painted to reinforce the message.

11 (Large)Almost as well known as the actual Rock, Gibraltar is also known for it’s apes. It is said that if the apes leave then Gibraltar will fall. The apes are a big tourist attraction and some are approachable and will pose for photos. They are still wild though and roam freely across the Rock.

12 (Large)Looking along the Rock with Spain in the background. The Eastern end of the runway is in the middle of the photo. Although it is mainly sunny in Gibraltar, when the wind blows from the East, a Levanter cloud forms which hangs over the town until he wind changes direction. The sea mist is forming and being blown towards the Rock by a east wind. This would form into the Levanter.