Week 2 – Reflection

This week has introduced some new ideas around mediation. As with the work we did on collaboration in P&P it is moving me out of a previous space in which my photography was ‘my’ photography to one in which it is work created from what is available and with who I wish to produce it. The most exciting outcome of this has been sharing my project ideas about ‘The Truth & Beauty of Me’ with an artist friend Mairi. We talked about the various approaches to representation of a portrait. She is going to make an oil painting of an image of me taken by me which I intend to include in my body of work for my project. There are different stories of the image I have chosen that could be created by people who do not know me and by thouse who do.

She is also interested in somehow introducing photographs in to her work as a painter. She does not yet know how but we will talk some more and I am excited by what she might come up with. Collaboration and mediation could both arise out of these conversations and experiments.

This is the ‘me’ she will use as a reference for her painting but I have also provided her with all of the images in my current work in progress gallery.

I have reflected a lot on what I can capture of the self in my project. The following two images interest me.

In the first I am in a sad state internally but put a smile on my face. In the second I am happy inside and smile. What differences, if any, are there? What more can I do with this? From sharing this with other people it seems there is little information about my internal state from my external projection.

Producing a trailer for my project illustrated some differences between video and still image. I found the experience a little disturbing on video and do wonder how I can get similar effect with a still image. Possibly I have both in my body of work.

The Truth & Beauty of Me

A further interesting provocation from the webinar this week with Chris and Laura is the idea of collaborating with other people on my work. This interests me and I am going to think further. Motion sensor detectors to capture me unaware on film and time lapse photography when I am asleep are other ideas to work further on.

This week I also booked a venue for my exhibition for Landings in August. I feel tension within wondering if I can get everything done on time but am excited about the process of getting there.

Categories: Coursework, Surfaces and Strategies

LEN

I am a Photographer. As well as taking many photographs I am currently studying for an MA in Photography at Falmouth University. I will direct my attention through the lens of my camera for the next couple of years and see what shows up. I see a photograph as a little bit of magic capturing a moment in time. If successful it surprises and engages your emotions. It tells a story about the wonders of being alive or tells us what we need to change to make it a better world to live in. That is enough for me to get going and then like walking a 1000 miles, which I did across the UK in 2010, or walking 200 miles across Cyprus, which I did in November last year, it is one step at a time.

I was a writer. The title of my unpublished book was ‘You Would Have Done The Same.' It is about a successful guy in love with his wife who lets her die when he discovers her in the process of committing suicide. The title gives a clue as to what I think you would have done. The book is 200 pages long. I found it cathartic to write it but after two years of work and reviewing with agents decided it probably needed another 2000 hours to get the whole book up to the standard of some of the pages. Writing is great but it is a lot of sitting down so I decided to get out and walk, play tennis, play bridge, go birding, watch football at Nottingham Forest, Arsenal and Valencia and anywhere else if I can, meditate, cook and eat. I was a writer who has so far failed to become an author.
I was a young man who loved Mathematics and thoroughly enjoyed getting a BSc at Liverpool University. While there I went often to Anfield and the Philharmonic Hall. I was all set on doing a PhD until I went for interview practice at BP and got seduced by the excitement of an International business career. BP was a great adventure building trading teams and businesses in London, Antwerp, Cleveland Ohio and Singapore. Fabulous people and some great challenges and also very hard work, constant jet lag and lots of fun along the way. I married Karen, my stunning wife, and had the most amazing time with her and our three boys Alex, Tom and Dan. She has multiple sclerosis and we have taken on many challenges together but somehow keep creating a new normal against the horrors thrown our way. She is the love of my life.

After BP I decided to coach senior executives and quickly realized I had a lot to learn
about what makes people tick. I had a fantastic 18 months on the International Programme of the Cleveland Gestalt Institute. A great faculty and a
wonderful group of people on the programme. We studied and worked in Dingle, Singapore, Holland, Cape Town and
Lisbon. This also got me interested in the way we think and make decisions so I studied for an MSc in Psychology atUniversity College London in 2010. The
Masters was in Cognitive and Decision Sciences and I found it fascinating what
we do know but also how much we don’t know about how we think and make
decisions.

I loved coaching and making a difference. I got a number of people to hear themselves, remove some of their own chains and free up the way they thought about the world. I remain fascinated by how people react to and engage with the world. My Masters thesis was why do two people given the same information make different decisions? Put simply, it is because each of us are unique in the way we are constructed.

Since returning from Singapore I found English winters tough so moved to Spain where I now live. The people are lovely, the scenery amazing, food delicious and the sun shines all the time. Almost.

All of these experiences will feed in to my time now as a Photographer. Three motivations I am lucky to have are enthusiasm, curiosity and a continuous interest in learning. All the time I look forward to meeting old friends and making new friends and experiencing this wonderful life together.