Final Reflection on Learning Outcomes of #Phonar

‘Phonar’ was an exciting module, which encouraged me (LO1) to effectively undertake sophisticated research, analysis and interpretation of material, shown by my completed tasks and my “Post Photographic Portrait”. My research consisted of listening to interviews, looking at artists’ work and the surrounding debates. I also undertook my own research, by conducting interviews and gathering a photographic archive. By reflecting on and interpreting this information, I was able to develop my understanding, allowing me to progress.

I have recognised the fundamental concerns involved in generating concepts that efficiently communicate a specific message to a particular audience (LO2). For my “Post Photographic Portrait” I designed work for digital natives wanting to explore the world of motor sport enthusiasts. I created an immersive archival platform online to show a multi perspective (LO4). If this work was not produced then these photographs would have been hidden, never to be brought together to create this non-linear narrative.

During other tasks I learnt about issues (LO2) involved in narrative story telling, such as the power imbalance. I realise now that it is imperative that we show our subjects’ story how they want to show it. It is the collaborative part of the work that makes it successful. Our photography is always linked to the triad relationship of the photographer, subject and audience. During ‘Phonar’ I have learnt to be careful not to miss-represent the stories of my subjects. I prioritised my participants; letting them lead.

I have produced a photographic narrative applying a range of analytical and practical photographic skills (LO3); throughout tasks and my final piece I have developed new audio and photographic approaches [1], as well as participatory engagement techniques. Aaron Huey (Huey 2014) made me realise that, to make great work you have to go into the unknown. (LO4/5) Interviewing unknown people is a new experience for me and gave me a context that I wouldn’t have been able to include otherwise. I developed my understanding of web design, through an online platform “thinglink”; allowing me to create my own interactive archive.

Throughout ‘Phonar’ I have experimented with a variety of narrative forms as a creative approach to communicating visual themes, narratives and concepts (LO4). From tasks such as ‘Alienated Sensory Mash Up’ to ‘Unphotographable Phiction’ I have explored audio techniques, and tasks ‘My Spoken Narrative’ and ‘Transformative Storytelling’, helped me to develop how I approached my participants. I have developed both linear and non-linear narratives, disembodied audio narratives, which culminated in creating an interactive non-linear participatory archive of perspectives for my audience to explore.

I have critically evaluated and made editorial decisions throughout (LO5). Having completed my “Transformative Storytelling” task, I evaluated my choice of platform from my immersive media piece, and developed my audio skills. This reflection allowed me to develop my ideas further, leading me to my “Post Photographic Portrait” idea. Fred Ritchin (Ritchin 2014) made me reflect on my “Post photographic portrait”[2] I created an interactive platform for the viewer to explore online, however the viewer would not be able to experience the feelings of physically holding these photographs in their hands.  I tried to over come these issues by creating interaction so the viewer can see where the photographs come from, and hear soundscapes and interviews, immersing the viewer in the archive (LO2/3/4). However, I realise that this will never be the original; it will always be a digital online screen version.

For further information please see my blog for weekly reflections and tasks.

 

Note:

  1. Can be seen at https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/11/16/the-making-of-my-post-photographic-portrait/
  1. Here is my ‘Post Photographic Portrait’ development, which shows my decision-making, (click here to see blog post: https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/11/15/research-and-development-of-my-post-photographic-portrait/).

  

References:

Huey, A. (2014) National Geographic Photographer Aaron Huey Interviewed For Phonarnation.Org[interview by Jonathan Worth], 2014

Ritchin, F. (2014) Professor Fred Ritchin , Author Of Bending The Frame, After Photography And In Our Own Image Talks To The Phonar.Org [Photography] Class. [interview by Jonathan Worth, Becky Woodall, Oliver Wood], 2014

 

 

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Identifying particular reflective pieces in my blog:

Identifying particular reflective pieces in my blog:

During ‘Phonar’ (Learning Outcome. 1)I have successfully undertaken appropriately sophisticated research, analysis and interpretation of information, this is shown in my research for tasks and my “Post Photographic Portrait”. I have also written reflections on tasks and weekly sessions. As shown below I have analysed and interpreted information.

“Hetherington got to know the people, he immersed himself; he became an insider to understand the situation he was covering in his work. This links to what Levi Strauss covers in “The epiphany of the other in Between the eyes Essays”. He talks about Sebastio Salgado and how his understanding and empathises means that he can cover the work from an insiders view.  His work is different, instead of photographing the drama like other documentary photographers; he is more interested in the people. I find this is a similar approach to Tim Hetherington…Hetherington wants to immerse his viewers; he wants us to experience as much as we can so that we understand.” (https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/10/19/tim-hetheringtons-restrepo/)

“Dalia Khamissy believes that Photography is about your personal research; this links to Todd Papageorge” If your photographs aren’t good enough, your not reading enough”. The narrative of the civil war hasn’t yet been written yet, they cannot teach it, because they haven’t decided yet. She is trying to use the narrative as a nature for change; she wants the people of Lebanon and the outside to see this; this links to how Fred Ritchin sees the role of photography, as a tool for change.”(https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/10/29/4258/)

I have identified the key issues involved in creating concepts that effectively communicate a particular message to a specific audience (LO. 2). For my “Post Photographic Portrait” I designed work for digital natives wanting to explore the world of motor sport enthusiasts. During other tasks I learnt about issues involved in narrative story telling, as seen below for my ‘Spoken Narrative task’,

“By putting us (as photographers) into this situation it made us realise how we can put our subjects at ease… We have a responsibility as photographers/story tellers; we need to tell stories not from our points of view but from the subjects. If we want to be trusted and our work to be trusted we need to make sure we aren’t changing or altering the story to suit our needs. Perhaps we can check back with our subject and see if they agree with how our work is progressing and ask them for feedback so we can develop.” (https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/10/19/my-spoken-narrative/)

I have independently produced a photographic narrative utilizing a range of analytical and practical photographic skills (LO. 3); throughout tasks and my final piece I have developed new audio and photographic approaches (can be seen at https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/11/16/the-making-of-my-post-photographic-portrait/). Aaron Huey “made me realise that, “to make great work you have to go into the unknown. The uncomfortable will give rewards! I have interviewed people for my project. This was a new and unknown experience. Talking to people that I don’t know and interviewing them gave me a context that I wouldn’t have been able to include otherwise”. (https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/11/12/aaron-huey/).

It was also Huey that made me aware that, by placing my work online it is assessable by most people. For my “Post photographic portrait” I am expanding whom I reach with my work. By collaborating with Laura Ritchie’s cello piece I am engaging an audience from a music background. By talking to motorcyclists I am engaging with them and their friends surrounding motorsports. This all expands on my audience for my work. I realise now that it is imperative that we show our subjects story how they want to show it. It is the collaborative part of the work that makes it successful.

“Mansour shows a Polaroid print to her subject whilst shooting, asking them about how they would like to be shown and what degree of visibility they are comfortable with. This is particularly important in Saudi Arabia as women do not reveal their identities to the public; therefore it was important for her to talk to her subjects and ask about what they were comfortable with…As a photographer we have to gain our subjects trust. I believe that collaborating with your subject allow for a deeper level of trust. This reminds me of Anthony Luvera’s assisted self portraits.” (https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/10/29/4258/)

Our photography is always linked to the triad relationship of the photographer, subject and audience. During ‘Phonar’ I have learnt to be careful not to miss-represent the stories of my subjects. I prioritised my participants; letting them lead.

Throughout ‘Phonar’ I have taken part in tasks that have allowed me to experiment with a range of narrative forms and media as a creative method for clearly articulating visual themes, stories and concepts (LO. 4). From tasks such as ‘Alienated Sensory Mash Up toUnphotographable PhictionI have explored audio techniques, and fromMy spoken narrative and theTransformative storytelling task, which allowed me to develop how I approach my participants.

I have critically evaluated my project work and the editorial decisions made throughout this process and its commercial relevance with respect to my chosen areas of specialism (LO. 5). Here is my ‘Post Photographic Portrait’ development, which shows my decision-making, (click here to see blog post: https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/11/15/research-and-development-of-my-post-photographic-portrait/). It was my “Transformative story telling” task that lead me to my “Post Photographic Portrait” idea. I evaluated my choice of platform for my immersive media piece, and developed my audio skills. I reflected on my ‘Transformative story telling task’ so that I could develop these ideas further. My work also developed from my weekly reflections as shown here. Having heard from Sarah Davidmann I have started to “think about how family histories are retold through the family albums. There are missing sections, as we only take photographs at happy events. We don’t take photographs of the struggles. Not only is this a personal conversation with her family album, but also it has larger implications on family albums in general. This is particularly interesting for me as I am also looking at my family albums. The way that she explored the past of her family that had never been told to her before was intriguing. By discussions with her mother, and looking through old letters and documentations she rediscovered her family stories”. (https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/11/05/sara-davidmann/)

From taking part in #Phonar and listening to the interviews I have learnt about the respect we owe our participants, Khamissy  made me realise that, “I should feel privileged to be the person that these people are sharing their stories with. As Khamissy said, we have a responsibility to tell the stories and witness to their narratives. I want the stories to come across as they told them. Therefore I have chosen to interview my participants.  I plan to tell them about my project and show them how I plan to show the photographs, artefacts, and interview clips. I want to make sure that they are happy with how I will show and share their stories.” (https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/11/15/jason-tilley/)  

One of Robert Capa’s famous quotes is, “If your photographs aren’t good enough then you aren’t close enough”. Todd Papageorge then altered this to, “If your pictures aren’t good enough then your not reading enough”. For my ‘Post Photographic Portrait I gathered information from people and gained an understanding of their stories. I feel this is my reading. I explored the context from which I created my archive. Fred Ritchin thinks that since photography has gone through its 2nd paradigm shift photographers have a new role as editors. By collecting these stories, artefacts, and photographs I feel I have become an editor of the project. Through my archive I am telling the stories of my participants.

Having listened to the interview with Fred Ritchin from ICP in New York, “I have a new reflection on my “Post photographic task”. I plan to create an interactive platform for the viewer to explore online.  I shall try to over come these issues by creating an interaction where the viewer can see where the photographs came from, and can explore other feelings within my work. However, I realise that this will never be the original; it will always be a digital online screen version. “(https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/11/19/catching-up-with-fred-ritchin-from-icp-in-new-york/).

For further information please see my blog for weekly reflections and tasks. Post Photographic Portrait explained:

Catching up with Fred Ritchin from ICP in New York: Reflection

Catching up with Fred Ritchin from ICP in New York

Thoughts…

Having listened to the interview with Fred Ritchin from ICP in New York I have a new reflection on my “Post photographic task”. I plan to create an interactive platform for the viewer to explore online. I can now see that this has more limitations than I originally thought about. As Fred Ritchin spoke about in the interview, “imagine you have a baby, but you only see this baby on a screen, you don’t feel it, you don’t touch it, you don’t smell it”. I have the same limitations to my work, the viewer will not be able to feel, touch, or smell it. I have had all these experiences whilst making and collecting the archive of work. I have touched, and seen the photographs; I have seen where these images are kept. I shall try to over come these issues by creating an interaction where the viewer can see where the photographs came from, and can explore other feelings within my work. I also realise that what I experienced isn’t even the original. I have experienced a photograph or cine film or interview of the event, but I haven’t experienced the event itself. The viewer of my work is a step further away; they are experiencing an event on my online archive, through me experiencing a collection of photographs and film, of the original event. I realise that this will never be the original; it will always be a digital online screen version. 

The making of my “Post photographic portrait”

Audio footage…

Sound scape of Phil H edit:

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From Premier pro to Audition after edit cutting clips

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Adobe Premier pro to Adobe Audition transfer

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Audio file after editing in audition

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Audio file uploaded to soundcloud

Feedback from Philip Stonely:

“I like the way the audio fades in and out.” and “I like the clip selection.”

Start of my “Post Photographic Portrait”…

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Feedback from Philip Stonely:

“I like the way you can go back and forth through people, it works well.”

Audio notes:

I booked a tutorial with an audio specialist and these are the notes I made. I now know which microphone to use in what situations.

Audio Notes

Audio Notes

Notes on what I plan to include:

photo 1

Editing the Interview with Philip Stonely:

Adobe Premiere Pro…

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Using Adobe Audition to edit interviews:

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Using Adobe Premiere to narrate my interviews:

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Final piece explained: video tutorial…

Research and development of my “Post photographic portrait”

Research…

The idea:

It was my “Transformative story telling” task that lead me to my “Post Photographic Portrait” idea.

I created an immersive media piece. I had been inspired by Joachim Schmidt’s use of found imagery and collage. I created a web based immersive media platform similar to Pinepoint. I used my inspiration from both Pinepoint and Joachim Schmidt to create a collage of my dads (Philip Stonely) story.

“I decided to create in interactive immersive media piece online as I wanted to share my family photographs with the online community. I wanted to share the family story in a way that the viewer would be immersed. I feel that when you are looking at an album the family member that knows about each picture usually end up talking about them. The viewer gets a further understanding from this context. If I was to just share the images without any context then the viewer may not understand or be immersed in the story. However I feel my piece allows the viewer to explore the story. I wanted to create an interaction that mirrors the sharing of family photographs in the home. I realise that if I share this online I have a wider audience than I would if I had invited people into my home. I have supplied relevant family photographs, a story from my dad, explanation of pictures, Brands Hatch racecourse videos, Triton motorcycle start up sounds etc. I feel that this will engage the viewer, and further their understanding of my family album photographs.” 

(https://jstonelyphotography.wordpress.com/2014/10/22/transformative-storytelling-task/)

Transformative-storytelling-task: Click here

Brands Hatch:

I needed to know what up coming events were one where I could photograph the track days. I found that at Brands Hatch there was only one track day during the module of Phonar. I had to quickly organise myself and my project to be ready for this day. I needed to plan what I wanted, and ready myself for the production day.

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I started my research on the Brands Hatch website. Even though I had been to Brands Hatch a few years ago; I wanted to familiarise myself.

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I realised that knowing about the layout of the track may help me contextualise stories that people told me.

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During Phonar I was introduced to a website called “Pine Point”.

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 Platforms I could create this on:

Having looked into different platforms I found limitations. “Glogster”, shown below was too restricted. I found it was more designed for school projects and younger ages.

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Glogster

You can see below the templates. These are designed for a younger audience.

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The Platform that I found most useful was “Thinglink”. I used this for my “Transformative story telling task” and decided to develop my ideas on here. I want to create an interactive archive of imagery. Where the viewer can explore at their own pace. “Thinglink” allows this interaction and exploration.

Thinglink

Thinglink

Reflection on my “Transformative story telling task”:

Having produced an interactive image for the “Transformative story telling task” I wanted to develop and improve for my “Post photographic task”. Looking back on this piece I can see that the layout and structure works well, as the viewer can explore at their own pace. However, I can also see that the video/audio files created over “Skype” are not great quality. For the “transformative story telling task” I wanted to explore the idea that,

the internet now allows us to collaborate with people on projects when we can’t even meet face to face. I made this project with my dad over a Skype conversation as I couldn’t go home for the project. I feel this mirrors the ideas in the project of the internet and sharing family photographs”. 

However, for my “Post photographic portrait” I want to show a quality archive. I feel that it is worth re-recording the interview with my dad. For my other interviews I shall also create them face to face. I shall practice interview techniques and research particular audio equipment that will be efficient in the different settings I shall be interviewing in.

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Dads interview on “Thinglink” before I re-recorded.

Audio Techniques and equipment research:

Notes taken:

photo 2

I now know what audio equipment to use in which environment.

Research of how others use “Thinglink”:

I feel the example below works well. There is an obvious reason for why they wanted the work to be displayed in this way. The viewer can explore the track and see what individual parts look like from a car.

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I feel the map also works well in this example below. This is a map of Ireland and it shows its viewer different sights around Ireland; inviting the viewer to explore.

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This last example (see below) I am not so fond of. It is empty, and there isn’t much for the viewer to explore. It is not clear why the creator wanted this to be interactive, I feel this does not work very well.

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I can see what works well and shall try to use this in my piece. I know that it is important not to leave spaces empty. I also know now that where I placing items can be very important. I shall try to create a interactive piece that is easily explored and understood.

My Archive:

Asking permission…

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Further  research:

I have come across websites to do with the loss of people in motor sports. I found a forum “Gone but not forgotten” where people were talking about friends that have died in races and motor sports. I found Lance Capon on this forum, an old friend of my dad and uncle. He died at Brands Hatch. On this site people share images and speak together online. I feel that my project is the next step. Inviting people to share their stories, and inviting people to explore others stories. I want to develop the idea of a forum, to an interactive explorative piece that I am creating.

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Click here for website: http://www.stevejordanmotorcycles.co.uk/ 

Jason Tilley: Reflection

https://thebeautifulpeopleblog.wordpress.com/

On display at the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum in Coventry

Having visited Jason Tilley’s work at the Herbert and listen to his talk I had these thoughts.

Thoughts…

I see a link between Jason Tilley’s work and my idea behind my “Post photographic portrait”. I want to go back and explore a moment of my families past. Jason Tilley’s work explores his families past in India. His work in the Herbert gallery displays his journey with his grandad around India and the people he comes across. This exhibition is a combination of old photographs, artefacts and new image by Jason Tilley on his journey.

I am interested in sharing an experience of my dad’s past. His life, friends, and world surrounding motorbike races. Having seen Tilley’s exhibition I could reflect on my ideas of display. Tilley’s work is shown framed on the walls and artefacts displayed in cabinets. The viewer can view the exhibition at their own pace. However, we cannot explore the artefacts themselves; we are told what is relevant e.g. the album is in a closed cabinet open on a chosen page. Tilley has chosen to edit together these sources. He has become a photo editor, an archivist.

I would also like to collect work together from old family albums. However, instead of displaying the artefacts in an exhibition I would like my work to be accessed online. I would like for my viewer to explore the old photographs, stories and artefacts; layering on their understanding. Tilley’s exhibition works really well as a physical collection, however, I like the idea of everyone having access.

Jason looks at the context behind his work. He explores so many aspects, from his old family photographs and artefacts, to talking to people in India as he explores. I also want to understand the context behind my dad’s memory of motorbike racing. Therefore I decided to talk to my uncle and the friends they both made in the 70’s. I also intend to visit Brands Hatch an talk to others about their experiences. I plan to talk to the people that are mentioned in the stories or photographs. One of Robert Capa’s famous quotes is, “If your photographs aren’t good enough then you aren’t close enough”. Todd Papageorge then altered this to, “If your pictures aren’t good enough then your not reading enough”. I feel that, gathering information from people and talking to them and understanding their stories; is my reading. I am exploring the context from which I will create my archive.

Fred Ritchin thinks that since photography has gone through its 2nd paradigm shift photographers have a new role as editors. By collecting these stories, artefacts, and photographs I feel I am becoming an editor of the project. Through my archive I am telling the stories of my participants.

From taking part in #Phonar and listening to the interviews between Jonathan Worth and Khamissy  I realise that I should feel privileged to be the person that these people are sharing their stories with. As Khamissy said, we have a responsibility to tell the stories and witness to their narratives. I want the stories to come across as they told them. Therefore I have chosen to interview my participants.  I plan to tell them about my project and show them how I plan to show the photographs, artefacts, and interview clips. I want to make sure that they are happy with how I will show and share their stories.