Digital Image and Culture was my first level two photography course. The change in expectations from level one was quite pronounced however, I feel as though this has really forced me to expand my photographic practice.
Perhaps the most important thing that this course has taught me, is the importance of making work that is personally relevant. By incorporating more of my experience and background into my work, I have been able to create images that are more expressive, that have more depth and that show my own personal voice.
I have a very strong background in academia and the natural sciences. Looking at the course retrospectively, I can see that I started incorporating my scientific background into my photography as early as assignment one although, I wasn’t aware of it at the time. For the first assignment, I tested out an alternative processing technique (transaquatype printing) that I had read about but never seen, and in doing so, I reignited my enthusiasm for experimentation. This renewed enthusiasm carried my through the course and my learning log shows a personal journey of discovery, especially with regards to alternative photography/printing methods.
It seems ironic, that a course about digital photography should inspire me to investigate and utilise physical techniques but somehow that’s what happened. I’ve found that the combination of digital and analogue approaches really excites me and also, that it really suits my practice. In fact, assignments one, two, four and five all made use of this combined approach.
What assignments two, four and five also have in common, is that they draw heavily on my background in academic geology. By incorporating my scientific knowledge, I was able to give these series’ a greater sense of depth and originality than they would otherwise have had.
In addition, all of these assignments used a process of construction; the composition for each individual image had to be carefully built or arranged. I realise now, that a sense of materiality is also very important to my evolving artistic practice.
Having now finished the course, I can see how my ideas have progressed and how my working methodology has evolved. I look forward to continuing my learning journey on my next course, Landscape.