Students arrive from a very diverse range of backgrounds and experiences of photography. Stage One (especially Semester 1 - only half-jokingly referred to as 'boot camp'!) is about establishing and making sure everyone is up to speed the basic range of skills required, technically, visually and academically.
Introductory cross genre module which includes self portraiture, studio
portraiture and an exploration of the various types of documentary and narrative photography.
Black and white photography module incorporating shooting on and developing
monochrome film, darkroom printing and techniques. Also an introduction to
medium format and 5x4 cameras. This area a-is linked to and actively underpins contemporary digital practice.
Explorations of the uses and interpretations of visual language. A short essay
(1,500 words) will explore academic conventions in analysing images while
the creative and practical component of the course will explore working with images in a
coherent creative series and some craft based aspects of making a photo-book.
This module will develop studio-based skills begun in Photographing
Ourselves (see above). We will explore portraiture, fashion, still life and product photography, supported by reading of set texts, and the advanced use of studio lighting in our well equipped studio. This
module is designed to stretch your creative, reflective, as well as your technical skills.
Digital Practice + Culture
Use of Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom in a commercial context. We will also
be looking at digital workflow, design, manipulation, commercial
retouching and an introduction to moving image for photographers.
In terms of work produced we encourage a research-based approach based on areas you wish to explore.
This module is about the realities and responsibilities of business practice. We
work with an outside agency supporting independent businesses in Bristol.
We will also explore the realm of ethics in photographic practice, through research,
photographic exercises and visiting lecturers.
The selection, editing, curation and exhibiting of student work, held in a public gallery as part of this module.
Stage Two increasingly becomes about developing your own practice as a photographer.
This module explores working on location, emphasising the use and control of location lighting, whether that be natural light, the use of flash, or the use of studio lights in a location context. There is an extensive workshop programme on location lighting skills.
Building on the written skills and research practice developed in the first year, this module is a written research paper emphasising independent investigations and the application of critical understanding, resulting in your drawing independent informed conclusions.
This module progresses students from set assignments to explore self-devised ones, and allows the exploration + development of practice in their chosen photographic specialism.
Research and development is an essential component in the development of this work. This is a relatively open brief designed to be facilitated by extensive tutorial discussion and support.
Essentially this module is about exploring the range of ways of getting your work into the public arena, relevant to your practice. Some sort of web presence is pretty much an essential, but students may also explore a marketing campaign, online book production, undertake a group or solo exhibition, or devise another route in negotiation with tutors.
This is another open brief enabling students to build on previous work or devise a new definitive body of independent work. Again research and development are strongly emphasised in the development of this work.
This module reflects your impending graduation and independence. Your portfolio (in whatever form this may take) will be a crucial vehicle in your employability (at whatever level) on graduation. Much seminar time will be allocated to exploring the various options and media to suit your direction.
Also this module will support students creation of a coherent body of work and participation in our annual Graduation Show held in a public gallery.
In addition students will reflect on and evaluate their progress and achievement with an illustrated presentation to their peers and staff.