artist research need this is then titles and links


Empty Spaces, is a project based on a scene many people take for granted, looking at capturing different stages associated with events in a range of places. Focusing on the expectation and inviting the viewer to imagine different kinds of events that take place in them. While showing the location of the event that usually brings hundreds or thousands of people together for a day or a weekend for a gathering as a chance of socialising and entertainment. However, where as the stage is usually seen as being crowded, empty spaces looks at the venues while they’re empty where everyone has gone and there is not a living soul about.

With looking into the images being drawn towards the empty stage, the main focus of any event that happens there. Even though the scene is empty you can envisage a change of lighting, a performance going on and the crowd stood looking towards the stage enjoying themselves, captivated in the moment. Making the viewer think and relate the scenes to music events they have seen and placing the viewer’s own memories on to the image. While seeing the image in front of the person, creating an image that is real but also forming an illusion.

While holding a beauty and sadness in the images, capturing how a beautiful place used by a vast amount of people is only seen when it is busy and mainly dark but throughout a large amount of time, usually the day the place is closed, so empty, a lot of the time hidden away and in turn not appreciated.

To me this imagery is beautiful, where I am drawn in by the rich use of colour that creates an emotional power to the imagery but held by the meaning that enforces the emotional impact. As it makes me think of how these locations are important to myself and many others where the places have been built with a set idea in mind focusing so much on the appearance’s beauty and yet it’s is not really seen within it’s glory or appreciated and when it is seen it is mainly littered with rubbish from the event that has just finished. Making you consider how important these places are.




Here Edgar Martins has photographed a mock-up town built in 2003 that is used to train firearms and public order units in the metropolitan police. Here he focuses on an urban scene that looks like any typical place, that people walk past but don’t pay much attention to in turn capturing an isolated scene in places that look like they are being used. Creating the impression that the scene is just documenting a location, a typical everyday place making the images believable. However, looking in deeper you see that the images created to make them believable through photography are not what they seem. Instead you realize that the shop for example although it has a coke canopy you look over it you see a door but after a few looks you notice there is no door. Noticing the unusual, you then realize each image is captured being documented from the exact same angle with no surroundings. Where the light in the second image is first looked at as being the lighting that creates the scene and adds a warm atmosphere. However, in comparison with a scene with no lights able to be on you realize the lighting is set up in the same way and the shadows suggests the lighting that is used is out of shot and off angle for being a regular documentary. As the portrayal suggests more of a product shoot set up and creating the impression of nothing is moving in or out and portraying that the scene is not as it seems even though they are familiar to every day.

This work I find interesting, as it is not something that you see often although at the same time it is for the place photographed. However, reading into the images I start to think about my every day behavior of how I take my surroundings for granted. I don’t consider the beauty in what is around me in the areas I frequent most as much as I should and I miss things that could be interesting to capture and see due to it. While also looking at the idea that a location no matter where, is beautiful if looked at in a different light, if you look at the place rather than the effect people have on the place which is enforced by the removal of people.



PIERDOM (2008 – 2011)

In this project Simon Roberts looks at a survey of British pleasure piers that were constructed in the 19th century when expanding Victorian seaside resorts and railways. These were mainly erected as landing docks for sea craft and day-trippers escaping from the city. In turn this has given the stereotype and idea that each time you visit the area they are always noisy with sounds of people, the arcade music and games lapping waves, sea gulls screaming and just a regular bustling place especially when the most prominent time to visit is the summer holidays when the places are most popular. However, Robert’s project looks at capturing these scenes focusing on the locations and showing what they look like when it is quiet and nobody is about, capturing more of the character of the area compared to the life that the area creates from visitors. This creates the context that as people look to go on holiday abroad more easily with package holiday options people other than the locals are surfers don’t make use or visit the U.K.’s holiday resorts so much. From this creating the impression that when you see the images you think of the memories for visiting your own holidays. Creating an emotional impact as with these images resonating with me where when envisioning them I recognize the locations from my yearly holidays as a child to Dorset when visiting family or visiting Western Super Mare. Recalling walking down the roads, through the city center, along the pier or sleeping in a room that over looks the pier, so hearing the voices of people socializing and cars going past at any hour, each night combined with the smell of the sea. Enforcing my memories and recalling it as a busy and vibrant place but instead as people don’t visit them as much the area dwindles and becomes a memory of what it is turning it to be silent as the images creating a sense of sadness.


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HOMELANDS (2001-2003)

Here Sunil Gupta looks at a project from a personal point of view. Looking at what in the areas that he classed as home remains that is associated with his life before having HIV, creating a sort of photo album of his life. In this the colour changes from black and white as an old photo taken as a child compared to the older version of Gupter stood in the shadows of the trees. To recent versions of digital colour images, where the idea of life is shown through what is seen in the area like graffiti on the walls being related to a scene in the hospital from an operation, enforcing the idea of being shown love from visiting.

The first reaction from seeing the work is that it is a warm approach due to the look of being like a family album so it captures personal moments. Looking further in though you get the sense of strength due to the fight with health and what in the area remains associated with the memories. Creating even more sentiment from the context with the reason for the images, making this work heart felt and interesting as it questions what makes you love the area that you call home?


ASYLUM – 1998

In this project Mark Powers was asked to create a project documenting a closed down asylum called Birmingham Borough Lunatic Asylum, a Victorian place that was uncovered when looking to refurbish the All Saints Hospital, that it was in the basement of with old records and journals from the time. This was then compared to Highcroft Hospital an asylum that was most prominent within Birmingham at the time. Till some parts were closed down, so to create a comparison of the two, capturing both sets in black and white so to draw more on this. In turn enforcing the strength of the light as you are drawn towards it before moving around the scenes to take in the surroundings. This makes you realize how open Highcroft is, with no door attached and a window in a room that looks like a bedroom, giving more of an understanding, trust and showing that the patients have some control compared to what is suggested with the terming of an asylum’s stigma. Where as the Birmingham Borough Lunatic Asylum shows the complete opposite, portraying a room as more of a prison cell portraying no connection with the outside world and society due to the lack of windows. Enforcing the opinion that an asylum ‘inmate’ in the Victorian times was seen as a criminal and was hidden away from the world. Drawing on the feeling of relief for society today having a more understanding about peoples battles compared to what they used to.

This work I find interesting as it draws on my memories in general from recalling the story of Birmingham Borough Lunatic Asylum being in the news. While Highcroft holds a more personal response from hearing stories from the place being local to where my family used to live so would be mentioned in reminiscent stories of the area.



In this project David Farrell looks at areas that have been part of famous events. In the case of these two the scenes don’t seem to say much as a large basis, just a ground with snow on it melting or a road with writing on it like slow. However, with context you are able to look in deeper to see that the snow is in fact in the form of footprints while the writing on the road at closer inspection reads bodies. Giving the idea of the footprints walking a ground in history like with the wars, holding death within the image, with both images pointing towards the graves and giving to the idea of Locard’s exchange principle ‘every contact leaves a trace’. Where the direction is pointed out or the impressions once made in the ground still stand within the lands chosen for the locations that hold no choice but have been tarnished from being innocent to now holding a story of death.

Here the rich colour is kept basic so to enforce the scenes however is left as being dark due to keeping the scenes as a sort of dark history, being hidden away. This adds an emotional impact as it creates sadness for the idea of the last place where people were alive or that took away the hope of any life being left for the ones whose death it was. Reminding me of how the war is seen to be places like no man’s land and Flanders’s field as well as where a crime or accident has happened resulting in death that has an impact on people’s lives saying this is the place the lives where ended or changed for good. This place, land will never be or mean the same as it did before.



Like with David Farrell’s work, Taryn Simon also looks at the idea of a location that has changed the meaning for good that had a long-term affect. Focusing on the idea of this is the place where my life changed. To tell the story of a range of people who in these cases were in an area on a night or sat drinking in a club when they were arrested for serious crimes and given life long sentences that later they were acquitted of. Having their lives, taken from them for something they hadn’t done. Creating a dark side to the scenes that once used to be a regular haunt for the people, emphasizing the reason of the darkness in the images where as the colour brings warmth and light showing the innocent and comfort of having the truth being out. Saying how the law at times can fail and yet it is so important to get it right so the right person is sentenced for the crime and the victim sees justice.

Even with being a recent project, this body of work is more prominent to society as the media is full of stories of people being failed at some point in history or recent by law or other authorities yet nothing is said about the impact it has on the innocents and victims. As shown with the idea of the Birmingham five or giving another field, the film Shawshank Redemption focusing on a banker Andy Dufresne, who is sentenced to life for murdering his wife and her lover. Even though claiming his innocence throughout and having a witness to back him up he is still failed by the law until he gets his own back and escapes. Showing the fight for life being taken away and then getting it back through determination and even though Shawshank show’s both sides of getting away and living the dream it also included a more brutal side of Brooks Halen, an elderly man who has become ‘institutionalized’ from being in prison for so long that when he is freed he can’t conform to life and commits suicide. Portraying the darker side of the law going wrong and between the film and the project, emphasizing the impact from the wrong decision can have on people like ‘the innocents’. In turn this creates a sense of sadness as it means that not only does the victims and their families not get the closure they want and have extra heart ache to go through but also the wrongly accused have their lives changed and taken away from them also.


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Being a member of the movement, New Topographics focusing on man-made buildings. Lewis Baltz captured the idea of spatial and artistic forms in everyday surroundings, portraying the side effects of industrial civilization on the natural landscape. Portraying a familiarity in the images and how a beautiful natural landscape was becoming rundown and dirty from the industrial work. While also capturing a beauty in what he sees from his use of colours and tones. As he emphasizes the black and white to form a sharp contrast while using grey’s to create an emotive effect. In doing this, the colours emphasize the shapes involved, creating a simplistic approach based on a use of angular squares and rectangles to add a more descriptive approach and portraying the same scene of windows and doors on a angle at different scales depending on the look of the building.

I find this work to be contradictory, as I do like the images due to the fact they hold a beauty through the colours and the dark blacks hold a sense of mystery about the place. While the angles used hold an interesting feature as you focus more on the lines. However, at the same time the images seem to be saying from the industrial time, these places are dirty and abandoned and are having a bad effect on their environment. Giving a bad connotation to the images.



Also being members of New Topographics, Bernhard and Hilla Becher looked to capture locations such as industrial facades to document their appearance. Keeping the same simple set-up in each to show the similarities in the scenes and giving conformity to man-made places through appearances. In this conformity each image is looked on straight ahead focusing on the front of the building. Where even with some difference each scene is made to be the same size, if they are smaller then the roads are given more space at the bottom of the image but the building is kept the same length and height throughout. Pointing out how even with different locations, different layouts and sometimes-different buildings each place within a set industry etc. is built to be alike to give a sense of identity. So even though you see different buildings there is still a familiarity dependent on the jobs. This work I find to be interesting as it represents a scenes appearance through similarity and difference in a simple layout. Something I want to consider within my work.


Working with analogue photography, Lyonel Feininger created images in an artistic way through double exposure. Here he put two negatives together in a viewfinder on a enlarger. So that the one image was on top of the other before allowing the light to expose the image onto the paper for different amount of times through dodging and burning so that some parts of the image (top half) came out darker than the rest (bottom half) creating a sense of long depth of field. Through doing this, two images have been combined so that you get the idea of a busy street with people going about their business at a speed that no one really pays attention as they are too busy trying to get to where they have to go. Also leaving a trace on the street as a sort of, on this day this behavior happened as a routine like what would be captured on cctv nowadays. Documenting what life and society was like at the times during the 1920’s and 1930’s so you can envision the scenes with sight, sound, smell and touch through just looking at the image. Which enforces the old look to the image from then, which enforces a nostalgic approach with the use of sepia toning. However, looking into the image you see the cart being pulled, the clothing and style that represents the time but the behavior of a person noticing a camera as walking past, showing they aren’t in a rush as much as they are noticing what is going on around them as compared to the other passers by in lighter tones shows faster movement and them not looking at the camera like they haven’t noticed it suggesting they are too busy trying to get to their destination to see someone taking images. Which I find interesting as it is portraying what society today has become known as with the hustle and bustle of the city from people at the regular times around 9am and 5pm rushing to get to where they need to be, who have no time to pay attention to what is going on around them. While on the flip side saying this is not today this is in fact 86 years ago when there weren’t as many vehicles on the road and when the population wasn’t so high as to what it is now and yet society was still the same.


With looking at wanting to capture the way people behave within places with a grand look, Candida Hofer created a project to document the behavior. However, in doing so she found she could she could do the same but with a lack of presence so turned to documenting just the locations without the people. That way telling the story of what goes on in these locations from what the building is showing as a way of the building telling the story. Where the buildings are able to show what society sees their value as like with the TEATRO LA FENICE DI VENEZIA V a location that is still available to be used, with rich tones, a strong sense of lighting from the light source for each cove and a rich design to portray it’s power and class within society. Giving a sense of still being used so it has an appreciation to the place. Where as the second image, CAMPO SAMBA PISA, looks at a place with soft washed-out colours, creating a passive effect, with plastic seating and deteriorating walls. Saying the people who use/used this place are using the place that is available. Other than that the place is not really of prominence to society so is not appreciated as much so is not looked after and is left to crumble and fade away.

When first looking at the images they are seen as being beautiful as they hold a history but at the same time either sadness or an interest to them either being appreciated or ignored. This is enforced with how with the images next to each the viewer is drawn to the ones that stand out; the ones cared for the most. In turn making you think about how all these places when ever they were built and used have a history, have a use but unless they are some rich heritage site they are not really bothered with otherwise meaning buildings that could hold a history to someone, hold memories are left to die unless they are seen to be appreciated by a vast quantity of people, a community. Reminding me of areas local to me that have been left empty or building sites for years, my lifetime some even longer hat are just falling as no one pays they any attention. Yet the ones at the center that are made to look beautiful are built to distract from the ones that mean little. Portraying the way in which society behaves in general.



With events being a main point, Harold Leifer here looked at documenting sports events such as this, one of sports most famous wrestling matches that made Muhammad Ali a household name. However, Leifer not only capturing the moment also looked at what was going on around the action, capturing the audience behavior also. To show how the audience responded to the fight and when Muhammad Ali was crowned champion. Capturing the scene from above, as a aerial view. That way drawing the viewer towards the white ring towards Cleveland Williams lying on the floor, before looking to Muhammed Ali celebrating capturing the key moments after the event. For when the spectators move towards Ali, and carry on sitting on Willams side. Portraying the two responses as the realization sets in.

The part I find most interesting about this image as well as the angle it is taken from. Is how due to the angle you can see the people are real, that the image is a documentation of the event. However, due to the distance from the camera and photographer to the action, the image creates a sense of being in small scale from the long focal length. Making the scene familiar to a wrestling toy, where the two boxers are two figures being played with and the view is taken from a child looking down on the game as though it is coming from their imagination, associated with many boy’s child hoods or a girl with her Barbie dolls. Giving the impression that Leifer is capturing his childhood game.


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APOLLO (1939)

With looking at capturing a history over a length of time, I came across this project by Karl Hugo Schmoltz. Here he looks at the life within cinemas. This is due to him being given a camera at a young age, so he decided to capture buildings for his imagery. In turn documenting life in Germany for over 30 years and the changes it made that were shown through the buildings portraying the atmosphere and behavior at the time. In these cases the Apollo Theater is shown as being open for business due to the entrance and sign all being lit up. However, the streets are empty of presence and cinema listings. While inside the curtains are closed and the seats lie empty only also being lit by the lighting that usually suggests the end of a film. This in context shows a country that was in recession and part of a war now rebuilding itself from it. Suggesting that now the recession was at an end people did not want to venture out and spend money on entertainment compared to before. Making a cinema once popular through Hitler’s reign as shown in Quentin Tarrintino’s, Inglorious Bastards, stand empty.




In addition, with looking at the history of a place, Dan Circa looked to capture what was left behind after the last owner of the house passed away leaving the house unvisited for years. A house in Herefordshire has lay empty as to how the owner has left it. Holding memories of the past owners suggested haunting the place due to the collection of items and memories. Through newspapers from decades previous, ornaments and photos. Telling the viewers what the people’s lives was like for each resident who lived there.

In these images Dan Circa captures them with the idea of a place being advertised of what stands out for the way a place was left. Capturing the rooms, as they were left and zooming in on key features. As the composition shows how the rooms are full of items as if owned by a hoarder so the idea is this is the room, these are the hidden gems within it all. While the colour expresses the age of the place adding a natural feel to an ancient home. Making me consider what to look out for if I capture any images on the inside.


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100 ABANDONED HOUSES (1990’S – 2012)

With a recession in America, there was a vast quantity of houses along routes that were empty. Forming the idea of this project! Showing what the homes looked like all in a set format of the outside from the side of the road lining up the differences of each place left empty creating roads of abandoned homes. All of which focus on centering the houses in the image and capturing the surroundings around the scene. Therefore, the colours of the house merge with surroundings through the seasons.


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Also focusing on the derelict Detroit homes, is this work by Yves Merchand and Romain Heffre. However, instead they look at the aspect of both the inside and the outside capturing a place that is falling to pieces but showing the beauty that remains and the state in which it was left in. Creating the images in a cinematic style through the use of light available, adding an extra look of beauty to the scene while the lines work with smooth shapes to help form the tones that emphasize the colour and creates an atmosphere.

This imagery reminds me of many places that I see around that have just been left to deteriorate but hold a captivation of what is it like inside. Giving a feeling of a mysterious place that allows the imagination run wild, as you don’t know what to expect and the stories form.


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The third option for looking at the places left behind within America, was this project. Where two urban explorers have gone to locations within America capturing the scenes inside the building and detailing what is left. Looking mainly at the places left in disrepair with all the items in, making the viewer question… why… why didn’t the owner take the stuff with them when they left? Creating the impression of leaving suddenly while the items sit waiting for life to come back as its colour fades from it. The colour of which is light, like the light blue and green in this image so to give a warm inviting feeling with natural brown items. Giving a sense of warmth and being welcomed but as time goes in the scene is drawing more white till no colour remains turning the scene to feel haunting.


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Another option for looking into the derelict of America was this work by Matthew Christopher. Here he looked at the inside of derelict buildings so to capture the state of popular used buildings like schools and cinema’s that had been left to decay. Capturing the inside of how it stands and the feel of memories that remain within its walls. Showing the way in which America turned through recession and buildings being left unattended. Capturing the lightness within the buildings from the places falling and the amount of windows, the use of white is dominant; this is also enforced in the colour of blue and red as the colours in the room fade to white. Focusing more on the composition the light is drawn into the center as the main focus from one side of the room to the other captures the whole scene from a wide angle to portray the whole scene. Showing all the space within the scene and other than the seating the main amount of space used is based on seating that is left, giving an empty feel.


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Another option for looking at the outside was this work by Bruce Gilden, capturing the destruction in Detroit. Focusing on homes that were falling into disrepair and becoming rubble. Capturing them from the outside focusing on the rubble or the empty hole left from the building falling down creating a sense of sorrow of a range of homes once loved and lived in become nothing. This is enforced by the image being in black and white as when you see the image you see the Americanized look, imagine colour associated with America’s homes but with this being removed you see are not what they once were.




Looking at different ways I could photograph a scene, in particular inside I looked for the option of 360. Moving across this image by Mark Blundell, here he spoken of a place he had photographed before stitching the image together through Photoshop, so that it created the illusion neatly. I found this way of creating the image interesting as it looks at first site like it is two routes within one room and you decide which way to go but then realize it’s one straight walk with just two angles captured, creating a sense of symmetry. However, after being drawn towards the center you move to the light coming through the darkness as the lighting and use of colour create more of a magical feeling compared to the open area with a large window.


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BOSNIA (1999)
Turning to the option of Magnum photographers, I came across this work that reminded me of a contact sheet both for digital and analogue photography. Capturing the scenes of urban spaces and collaging them together, D’Agata looked to photograph a relationship with the world. Looking at capturing the way in which the buildings are shown to be, in this cases looking at a flourishing area with bold, dominant colours and a range of angles creating energy and being welcoming compared to Bosnia showing small places within a large mass of land. Informing of how the area is mainly hidden and not so popular due to being a third world country. Put the scenes into the darkness like with the black and white. Telling the viewer the place isn’t as inviting.


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During looking at ranges of work I came across these images which I felt were interesting as not only just looking at the scene of abandoned places but also what lies around it. Capturing the scenes connected to it and within the society helping to inform the connection with it. Looking at these images I felt they were interesting due to the idea of what is happening outside the building along with advertising such as posters helping the context to the place. As with here where the scenes capture the surroundings and in the second image depicting political posters that have been left up so long they have become to ware away showing the dominance of the politics at the time in that the posters still stay showing the party are still in charge but also that people aren’t that bothered so they the posters have been left to fall away on their own. Emphasized with the idea of the whole scene shown to be neat and tidy has a large amount of colour to help it stand out and makes it have a beauty to the scene compared to the posters that zoom in on just the posters removing the surroundings but at the same time the lack of colour makes the scene passive. So even with it being the main focus the image isn’t dominant. Making me also want to look at what the small details suggest.


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Looking at the aspect of capturing surroundings also made me look into this work as it captured the outside from the inside. Showing what the place is like and in terms to its surroundings. Like here you see the scene through a window with no glass in it but trees growing around what remains. While the other image documents an abandoned park in the middle of conflict and war during that was popular by Nazi soldiers. Showing a sense of irony in a place popular during the war now being in a sense of disrepair due to war and conflict. Holding a sense of joyous times through the colour centered portraying life and energy while the surroundings that border the image show destruction.


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Looking at the idea of entertainment, Alec Soth focused on capturing the outside of empty theatre’s during the recession, looking at their dynamic appearance through bright joyful colours and use of different shapes, showing how they draw you in by the quirky feel to them. However, to put a dampener, these places are closed so showing a disinterest in their quirky appeal. Here he centers the place so to focus on the building, capturing some of the area so to give context but not focusing on the surroundings compared to the building being the main focus. Therefore, you get the impression of the building first. This I find interesting as it portrays the life within the building while documenting the destruction and disconnection associated with it.


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Another option for looking at the outside like with Moises Samen is this work by Ian Berry. Here he captures the graffiti that is left on an abandoned shop, showing how the entertainment scene is using abandoned places so to advertise the events. Giving an idea of how popular the entertainment is but how after the “graffiti” is left to just rot away because it’s not needed after it’s done it’s job. While the second image is more interesting within the same area as it focuses on a blue plague, a sense of appreciation within the area as someone who has become established and made the area popular has got a plaque to show his or her appreciation to music. Creating juxtaposition between the ideas of posters that detail the events are unwanted but a plaque that commemorates the fame for the same sort of thing is welcome. This is also shown through the colour that for the unwanted being in black and white portraying a gloomy, run down feel. Where as the blue plaque other than the name suggesting a colour, it is also a colour image that holds a sense of being inviting. This made me think of how many areas there are in the West Midlands associated with music and how they represent it.


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Sebastian looks to photograph all the grand buildings in Europe that have been left to succumb to time before they fall away or get ruined by graffiti etc. Looking to capture the beauty that they hold and the mysteries within them. Informing of the life they used to be associated with and how the last owner’s have left them and the history they hold. Through looking at places like palaces to prisons and university lab’s. Documenting the scenes so to capture the whole room through the colours they hold with usually fall alongside nature showing how the disrepair is turning out over time. This in turn gives a sense of sadness to beauty and history as it’s left to die but also creates another beauty in the process.


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Sternfeld looks at what a place is known for when being associated with death, in these cases a chair where Lee Harvey Oswald was sat in the cinema watching the film “Cry of Battle and War is Hell” when he was arrested at 1:50pm, November 22nd, 1963. After he had assassinated the president, John F. Kennedy in front of a large crowd turning the death into one of America’s most famous stories. Yet the image shows how the seat is nothing more than a seat in a cinema but with it’s seating arrangement being different to the one’s surrounding gives the impression of this seat has a sense of history. Enforcing what the place and the seat in particular is now known for. While the second image represents a shrine that has been made in remembrance to the Sioux Indian, Sitting Bull the medicine man, which is placed in front of the Black Hills of Dakota aka Mount Rushmore. The hills of which are famous for two reasons. The hills themselves being a place where until the 1800s they were home to the Sioux Indians and the land belonged to them. However, the hills were found to have gold within them and worries from the American Military created by General George Custer who already saw Sitting Bull as a threat (as he believed Sitting Bull’s fame from touring with Wild Bill Hancock, circus show would encourage his fans to join the ghost dance). Meaning that the Native Indians were already seen as a threat to Custer leading to the wanting of land and the conflict of the two sides lead to many fights. Ending in the battle of Little Big Horn where Custer, Sitting Bull and many men of both sides were killed. Leading to the Indian’s moving from their land while over time Sitting Bull has become known as a renegade. Creating an irony in the image as the shrine is being looked over by four iconic members of the American government who signed the statute of independence, giving the land freedom. Both images of which show colours that emphasize the main focus in the image but also capture them in mundane scenes. Showing how the scenes are no different but emphasize it’s meaning making this work interesting.

With these images I was drawn to them more as they both held a sense of how media has influenced the representation, which I feel, will also be key within my imagery through the option of advertising as it has become to be today. Along with the two times being bought together and making me think how scenes have become known for a set time so to even make the scene famous, no matter how long it lasted for. Making the images feel respectful in terms of this place holding an important event but also adding sadness in the destruction and death that has come about for it to become famous. Yet relieved that the event has turned out in terms of freedom.


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CHURCHES (2002-2005)

With seeing religious places, they always tend to be a building standing alone or in an area where they have prominence. However David Spero looks at places associated with religion in unusual places for the basis of his work. By focusing on ones that have been reverted like a shop, warehouse, or that is situated in unexpected places like as a rock monument within busy streets. Showing how the places can be anywhere but are not expected to be seen where they are. This is done by capturing a religious location so that it is centered in the image, showing the surroundings in contrasted tones. In turn the building does not stand out but making you look into the image to notice the subject. In return pointing out this is a religious place but you wouldn’t expect it. This work is interesting due to how it makes you look into the image more and makes you think about the areas that you see the monuments within. It is also insightful, as with the images like with these two examples, you don’t have the theme of religion standing out so you wouldn’t expect the place to be a church. However, this project shows any building can be anywhere. Even informing me that a building I always love seeing when in London, with a statue of Freddie Mercury isn’t just some monument to music but also a place of religion. Something until now I did not realise.


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With talking with Vikki Simkiss she suggested this artist to me, here Paiva focuses on capturing images within an abandoned places in this case a theme park and a newspaper building. Trying to capture the scene that once was and how it remains now. This at points is done with a state on movement and colour in the imagery so to make the place look like it is still working even though the rest of the image(s) inform the viewer that the place is not in use any more. This is done through the documentation of the imagery showing a run down abandoned feature with lively colours that encourage the viewer to want to enjoy and the saturation of yellows suggesting light bulbs being switched on so that the rundown machines just look like they are old and battered. Representing a lot of how the country had become from recessions or places not being as popular as they once were due to lack of money or the encouragement of media. Meaning small places like family run ones didn’t stand the time or print based companies closing as the newspaper turns into being online. Giving a sense of enjoyment when viewing the imagery but bringing in a sense of sadness of what was. As I recall feeling from my youth of enjoying the holidays and going across to my main park, getting the excitement of the funfair being there, then feeling sad as I saw the funfair being closed and packed away or seeing the elderly man that would sit opposite the park selling newspapers in a little newspaper stand throughout my youth to then disappear from his spot one morning and not return.


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Suburban Garages (2001)

In these images Shafran showed the mundane life of people and gave a portrait to people through the property they owned. This is through looking at the state people leave their garages in, giving an impression in what the people are like. Showing how people come and go and the importance they have for their own property in particular the garage. Leaving out any idea of life so that all you see is the property without the people in it giving a life without a life. Making the work a portrait of the owner with the impression on the landscape.


The work was made for the interest of the artist capturing the local surrounding. Showing the run down area and lack of consideration compared to the other resident who has their garage hidden away. Giving the idea of the lack of use as compared to ones that want it hidden away in their garden, showing a sense of society.


Through looking at these photographs the viewer gets a sense of rundown with majority of the image being in white with natural tones of green from the trees and gardens. As the dirtiness is emphasised from where the garages are left unconsidered. With this though the garages are centred and even though you are drawn to them you they don’t stand out from the scene. Instead creates a sense of space in what is a busy image around it.


This reminds me of the way society is as with walking around on council estates, there is a repetition of garages all left in a state of disrepair or crumbling. When going to an area of wealth they are freshly painted and attached to the houses mainly with a washed look. Walking around some also have features such as graffiti on them, mainly in the sense of a smile. This gives an impression of the owner’s attitude or self-preservation. Giving an identity to someone who you may not know. In turn being an interesting way to identify someone.

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Teenage Precinct Shoppers (1990)

While in this project Shafran shows his original work as a fashion photographer. Looking at the youth’s style of the time while having innocence about them there is also a sense of rebellion. Here there is a lack of insight in the black and white image you are only given a sense of a portrait about the person while the coloured images are shown of the people within their regular surroundings as they are out shopping. Giving an idea of these people have something to say but only show it passively due to their innocence. Showing the subcultures at the time and their representation of society and fashion. Yet the set up of the people being centered or their surroundings being in the distance adds a sense of space and disconnection with society. Reminding me of how society portrays itself through what they are interested in such as music, favorite colours, decades they are influenced by and when they were born. Giving an insight into people even more so without knowing them.


Mark Osbourne

21-27-M29-Wild-Boys 26-32-M29-Wild-Boys 35-Banshees


This Is Then

The Cure, Birmingham  Odeon, supporting Souxie and the Banshee’s, 19th September 1979

Wild Boys, Zodiac, November 1979

Last Bus, Wild Boys, Zodiac, November 1979

With speaking to Oliver Wood, I was suggested the project that Jason Scott – Tilley had worked on. With speaking to Jason I found it was this project called “This Is Then” focusing on images that Mark Osbourn had taken around the 1970’s on his film camera of music events and the actions surrounding it. However, these images had not made the final cut the first time. Therefore, Mark Osbourn looked to revisit the images to see what missed gems there were.


With looking through the collection of images you got the impression of a reoccurring narrative associated with a gig happening, capturing the artist, the fans, other people such as regulars at the event and travelling to or from the gig. In turn showing a scene that large amounts of people are familiar with. All of which though being captured in black and white giving the feel of photojournalism. While the lighting emphasizes where to look and captures the expression to the image, creating a sense of sound or lack of in terms of the bus. While allowing the image to single people out who are not joining the majority in their behavior, such as the one walking away. In turn giving the impression of rebellion and being different rather than fitting in with everyone as was popular in the music at the time. Suggesting the Midlands music has a high influence on its audience. Something I am familiar with through interacting with the same music scene but nowadays however the same occurrences also happening every weekend as people follow the same behavior when going clubbing. Playing on my memories of what I’ve seen and what I’ve been a part of, allowing me to enforce my memories on to the scene.


Gillian Wearing

After speaking to Anthony it was suggested for me to look at Gillian Wearing’s video “Dancing in Peckham”. This is based on the notion that Wearing had seen a woman at a festival dancing out of control to music however in doing so she was going at a different tempo to what the music was. This then led to Wearing’s idea to put the scene in a shopping centre a place it is not usually seen so to capture the responses of people as they went past while in a way creating a self-portrait. Making it that this work was created for the interest of the artist., of which is captured in the 1990’s so portraying the fashion and style at the time while being focused on moves that resemble being out of control as the time was suggested to be encouraging the misuse of drugs. Hence why the audience sees it as a sense of amusement for the odd behaviour or shock. Especially with the location being somewhere unexpected suggesting the behaviour in a typical location of a festival cause no alarm but in other areas such as a shopping centre it is not right for the actions to be happening there. Yet the washed out coloured tones give an impression of what is expected to represent drugs and also of what the tones to go with the 1990’s suggested. Especially with the main focus being on Wearing who is dressed in festival attire but the ones passing by become more of the focus even though the video is not based on them.

2001-GILLIAN-WEARING-32 girl hitch hiking girldancing

This reminds me of Wearing’s other project created not long after, where she uses a range of videos focused on the audience, the bar and outside a night club on Broad Street, Birmingham. Where she captures the descent of people drinking so that they become less aware of their actions throughout the night. In turn using the videos created as more of a way of a shock to the audience as they are able to relate with what they’ve seen from doing it themselves but becoming to be more aware of their own actions.

Finance and Resources

With considering the area that I wanted to cover I looked at the finance for how much it would cost me. Beginning first with what resources I needed to help me calculate the full amount as an estimate.


Camera – use my own, large and medium format and canon 5d

Tripod – use my own

Travel – about £100 – £150 (also use time for when i’m in university to reduce the cost (£8.20 tickets)

Museum visit – £2

Film and paper – £150 (£around £7 per film)

Digital Printing and Presentation- £100 – £150 (dependant on what I choose as final format).

Estimation £500

This gave me a rough estimation of how much I felt I would have to keep at hand so that I would be able to afford to complete my work to a satisfactory level.

Layout of Artists – Ideas gained

With compiling all my research together, there was a large amount to go through in terms of the photographers work but they seemed to be able to be compiled together into groups. Making me decide to print out my research and put them into these groups for me to be influenced and see how I could go about shooting my project.IMG_0060


Here these images I felt looked at more of the items left behind. This gave me the idea to focus on the items that had been left behind from nights out at popular venues to give a representation of what had happened. Otherwise look for remaining pieces from when the place was once a music venue or that connected to the building like leaflets that represent music, to try and build this connection to the venue and it’s past life.



While with these images I got the impression of the disuse of the building and how these places once had something happening in them as either someone living there, a music event or a trip to the beach but now the place is empty and the life is not held within as it once was. So instead capturing the life as it is removed.



This same idea was also given with these images however these were based


on the inside .

Leading me to consider shooting both the inside and outdoors.



With not being sure about entering empty property without permission IMG_0073I thought this idea might be worth trying of capturing the scene through the window to show the state of the building and the eminence of the inside but keeping the project to one side of the door.


As for these images I feel these were the strongest idea and instead of IMG_3142capturing what remained they instead looked at how the place had become capturing a sense of what remains but in the form of this is what’s left… when you look at this area there is a sense of these actions once happening at these places still remaining within the environment. This coincided with the impression of when people see a place they recall it as the good times they had even if the land don’t hold those memories an more.

Leading on to these images of how the places may not look like as they aIMG_3135re expected or in my idea, leading more to being something else and not how they once were.




While these images gave more of an idea of how to lay out my images.

Giving the impression of what once happened being in the form of a IMG_3132double exposure or overlaying bringing together a gig and an empty building.






Where as with the idea of capturing the outside and David Spero’s imagesIMG_0074

showing the surrounding area I felt it might be worth capturing the area and what lie’s around it to give a context of the environment that the area is in. Making me think of doing a panoramic of the scenes.


Finally with the idea coming into my work of time, these options looked to show a range of IMG_0080places and the familiarity in each place so that when viewing them you can tell that the places relate to each other. However, with the form of music and a large range of time my images would show more of how the places have changed over time.


In turn giving me a wide area in which to consider when it came to me shooting the locations I wanted to look at within my work.


For my Final Major Project I decided to look at photographing the way in which popular music scenes have changed over time and how their identity have become to be something different through the redevelopment of the area. However, even with a change of the area the building still holds a resemblance to how the venue used to look. Due to this I created a project based on a music booklet that portrayed a collection of gigs that were iconic. That once took place at the venues while showing the appearance of the venues nowadays. So that the audience views the venues as they are now rather than the memory but combines the place with the memory of recollecting how they have seen artists perform whether on tv or through performance in turn making my work play on the viewer’s memory.


This is due to select venues being the place to visit as with Kasbah in Coventry, O2 academies throughout the country or the arena in London for locations that the artists tend to frequent most often. While these locations bring the money in or the fact society is a time based on showing ‘I was there when … happened’ while the country looks to represent and support the heritage or times that have made the area popular like famous musicians starting out but instead removing the places these people started out at. Giving my work the chance to say these are the places that create the heritage and yet this identity is being removed from them and is not considered as much as it should be.


In turn this work relates to contemporary photographic practice through the concept of portraying places that have been a common haunt for many but the economical or impact of society has led to each place being closed. Linking my work with the theme of derelict buildings, especially that of the style of Alec Soth’s Theatre project or Troy Paiva’s Abandoned America and David Spero’s project based on churches. However, my project looks to capture more of how the buildings have become rather than them being empty locations that still hold the original identity. Here it captures more of the same theme of David Spero’s of a place that doesn’t hold the identity associated with the venue. Yet to begin with there was a concept in mind of Bernhard and Hilla Becher’s to show the reoccurring theme that is held between the industry of music venues. While even though this was the original idea this did not get captured within my imagery but has had some impact on the layout of the imagery.


Due to the change in my work my concept took many different routes during the time. A strength for me was that from knowing the area that I wanted to go in with my work I had an idea from the beginning of what I wanted my project to be about, capturing the memories and time. However, even with this idea and my symposium being able to support and encourage my idea, my idea to me felt to be lacking something within the insight. While another weakness during the project was how I found it hard to focus on my FMP to begin with when I had time available to complete my work till May as compared to deadlines that were sooner so I tended to put off doing my FMP to focus on those modules and in turn lost time that I could have spent on my FMP. In addition, the time I spent on doing my sketchbook meant I also lost out on time that I could have used on shooting instead. However, at the time I felt as though the research would help me build on my work more to make it a stronger concept. Pushing my aim to finish in time further back towards the deadline and even though I came close to my deadline by the end from having to focus on the layout and set-up of the image more than what I usually do. I became more pedantic about the layout and getting the right conditions or set-up even if having to wait hours for the conditions to be how I wanted them. Leading me to feel that I was not prepared to print my work until I was completely happy with it.


In turn with many difficulties to overcome I am quite happy with the final outcome and how my projects turned out. I feel that even though I’ve completed my FMP to the point of the deadline and created a final product, my project is one I can carry on with and look at different angles. Such as the way music is portrayed in areas or looking at other places and how they represent music in their area to move my project forward rather than just finishing it on the day of hand in.

Proposal 1

As my first step I had to create a proposal to lay this idea out to my lecturer’s during an apt for my idea. Giving an idea of what my project would be about and how I plan to go about it.


FMP Proposal


Looking at the way places that were iconic in music most prominent time have turned out later on. (Today)

This is as I focus on going into music photography and feel that knowing the history of the area and the representation of the creative industry is like.


The work will be shown through a range of pictures that document different locations focusing on the way the area is now. Compared to what it was like when it was a key music environment. This will go alongside sourced images so to recreate the same scene to how it is now. Looking into the area I will also look to document any remaining pieces that hold onto the past so to form a set of images. Giving a profile of the area!


For this I will need to improve my timekeeping and to build on my confidence to go to areas that I avoid working in. Alongside working in an area that is highly populated with fewer nerves. This will be by going to the locations and returning to them with a deeper insight so that I am more comfortable in the area.


As a way of creating my images, I will focus around sourcing images that represent the way the places used to be. So that I can create my images with the same location being captured.


Afterwards the images will be collated together into either a book or video so to help depict the change in time in the way I feel is most informative to the images. The book of which will be designed in the way of which represents a music magazine or a photobook format. Depending on which I feel suits my images at the time.


So to keep on track with creating my work I will work to this scale so to have the work to be made on time.



2 14th Jan RESEARCH


4 28th Jan SHOOT OF AREA






10 11th Mar EDITING
11 18th Mar EDITING
12 25th Mar EDITING 


16 22nd Apr DEADLINE



From this project I intend to achieve a body of work that is based on an experimental and documentary basis. While portraying the importance of understanding and respecting the past within culture. In turn helping the audience to consider the history within society so to support it more compared to now. Over all this will also help me to over come obstacle that I feel let me down while strengthen my interests and work in a wider area.



With thinking of my idea for my FMP during the summer holidays, I was struggling with coming up with what it could be. With my interest being that I want to go into the area of music photography mainly, I also did my college FMP based on music. However, this option captured the live performance and due to having done this option before I felt I didn’t want to go down the same route again. Instead I wanted the idea to be different to the usual option and capture a different angle.

Thinking of ideas I came up with some options….

• Emotional nature – looking at the expression (like done with phonar)
• Music importance from people’s points of view – musicians, fans, other people that work in music
• Life without music
• Capture the music scene at the moment
• Past music scene

Keeping in mind that my symposium is based on subculture, I was interested by the aspect for the culture of music.
During my research I came across a key aspect…
When watching Dave Grohl’s documentary Sonic Highway he spoke of how when he was growing up he’d go to an area local to him. That was the place to be if interested in music, where you could get all the fashions, music or you’d see artists hanging out. Yet now he’s older, as he’s grown up the world has changed, it’s been developed to make it new or to fit more with the times and in this case a shopping mall has been built in the place where this rich heritage was. Something that was commonly mentioned as different places in America whether be Dave Grohl or Elvis Presley to what Carnaby Street and King’s Road are to fashion and music.

This resonated with me, as even though I don’t know the area that Dave Grohl’s fond of, it doesn’t matter where you go this happens often and reminded me of an article I read by Tony Iommi from Black Sabbath. He was helping support keeping a pub local to me that I had frequented open, as it is itself rich in musical heritage.

It’s a place where many bands like Black Sabbath or members of Led Zeppelin started out before their bands name even came about. The venue became the place where the members or band came into their own and helped them become who they are now starting the musicians off on a road to become iconic to the local area and country. Bringing tourism to in this case Birmingham, but the venue itself although gaining it’s history and earning it’s place within society and tourism on top of running as the local pub is still looking to be demolished to make way for ideas that will bring in tourism.

Raising the point, isn’t the venue like it whether it’s a club, pub or anywhere else going to help bring in tourism?
While how important is the heritage?

As Birmingham is known for its heritage of music but at the same time except the odd piece every now and again you don’t see much to commemorate or in appreciation of what has helped make the place what it is. Something I have noticed happens often in many areas.

This has bought about my idea of capturing “What Remains?” where I will locate the places in which have been supportive to music within the area of the West Midlands and hold history as the “place to be”. Then go there and photograph them as they are now so to show what is now left of places that were once popular and that has created many fond memories for people or helped make the place what it has become known for.


As an end project for my third year I have to create a body of work that is all self guided! The idea being that the last module, (the symposium) and this module relates to each other but my idea is for the whole years worth of work (including phonar) to all relate with the theme of music.

Proposal 1

As a task so to inform people of what my work was I was given the task to pitch a proposal by today. Informing my class, lecturer and the mentors of what my idea for my work was going to be. Due to having a range of ideas I decided to try and merge them into one for my proposal.

21/10/2014 – PROPOSAL 1 PITCHED

By the 21st October the class were set the task of creating a proposal as to what we was going to speak about in our symposiums.

This is the one that I created for mine combining all my ideas together.

Watching Music

For this module I am going to be creating a research project through the means of a symposium based around the idea of music and how music is interpreted to the audience through the means of photography so to document, advertise and the future of music photography.

My project will look to explain how music photography came about, the way in which the two forms work together and the control that such features have over the audience. So much so that photographers now days not only document the artists but also the fans and the industry has become to work hand in hand with each other.  Bringing about the questions of what is the essence of music photography that people say they can see music. Why is photography so important to music and its fans? Where did it start and what is it’s future? Based on the fact that a typical topic is of people at gigs/concerts spending more time documenting an event or having their phones out rather than watching the show.

For this I will approach the issue by looking at a range of sources for my research including books and academic articles based on essay and of people who have asked questions about the art of music and photography. Magazines in which music photography is the final creation or have spoken of audiences with cameras and the basis as to why they started out and have become so iconic on their own. On top of looking at my own knowledge from doing shoots and previously watching practitioners working in this area. For a deeper insight I am also going to look for interviews done by iconic photographers who have become established in the field so to gain their thoughts on the subject.

This means I will be focusing on work of people including Martin Parr as well as music photographers such as Mick Rock, Jim Marshall, Anthony Corbjin, David LaChapelle and Annie Leibovitz. Other music photographers that draw interest alongside this are Mike Peters and Melissa Auf der Maur, whom have both been or are members of bands but have taken up the art of music photography on the side.  While in the theoretical aspect I will be looking at works by Philip McIntyre, Liz Wells, Roland Barthes and William J Clinton.

After collecting my research I will arrange my sources so that I can gather as many points as possible that build a for and against on music photography along with build a list of points that I have selected that inform and answer the questions in which I ask or that build on my research project with as much insight as possible. That way I am able to answer the question that my symposium will start out with and look at the outcome of the future for music photography.  This will also bring out the key features to inform my presentation of which I am able to base my script around.

Along the way though, this will no doubt gain difficulties as music photography is only seen as a subgenre so there may not be many resources at hand for my work however through options of the university library, other libraries both university and local plus access to sites such as YouTube, Google and social media. I should be able to build enough of a coherent list of sources so to form the outcome of my work without too many problems. Even though I know that it may include a bit of searching and travel I should also be able to gain access to the information I need which will not be all based in one place.


So to plan out my work as I have come up with this timetable detailing what I should be doing by what deadline so to keep on track and help me keep motivated. This is created inline with the class timetable so to be organized between the two parts involved in the symposium.













From presenting this I was given the pointers so to move my work forward.

  • Look at wired magazine – Daniel
  • The making of the Cure’s videos – Anthony

I started at looking at the creation of the Cure’s video, this was suggested as a documentary film however with research I was not able to find it. So I decided to turn to the next best thing and look on google and youtube for any suggested videos on the topic. Where I found this book…


As a way of trying to look more into the making of The Cure’s music I came across this book wrote in the style of an essay focuses on expression of literature and ways in which different meaning taken from the same lyrics/words/etc. taken. In the eyes of The Cure, in particular Robert Smith it was a focus on a literature novel and highlighting racial behavior. While in the eye’s of the public it was seen as being offensive.  This brings about the fact that different people take different thoughts from what they hear. Which I felt was informative on the songs that gave the basis to the videos but didn’t inform my knowledge in terms of the videos.

  • Looking at Jimmy Page’s book based on his life – Becky
  • Remove the aspect of camera phones – Kate

Most of blog

narrowed down shoot – selection


deana outlines -final book

cov 21

canon 5d

50mm prime

may 3

28th shoot


26thapril shoot



Deciding to look at the option of music videos I had a think about what ones I could come up with that could help influence me that look at the option of music affect on society or how music has spoken about the way an area or society had become being represented in a song.

The Specials – Ghost Town

This video being created by The Specials, who are driving around Coventry, through it’s main route and close to the city center. To show how much of the area is closed and how nobody is about compared to before and now, when Coventry was at the forefront for new ideas and being one of the best places for industries. In turn creating the idea of a ghost town, with everything dying. This is emulated in a black and white image and sad expressions to enforce the gloom of the time. Making this video one of the most famous ones to come out of Coventry









This was also emulated in this parody song of Alicia Keys New York, done by people who are famous from Newport. Talking about how Newport is seen in general and how it is important to them with a comical response. While the famous faces react in jokingly ways, in front of backdrops associated with why they are famous, alongside photographs that are key scenes within the area. In turn bringing celebrities together to help support a charity and raise money from the audience.


Another option like this, is this music video by Bartholomew Cubbins (Jared Leto) where the band themselves and people they are associated with, speak about how the place, Los Angeles is known as being full of dreams, the American dream and where celebrities are mainly sought to be creating a sense of wealth. However, even without the wealth and being homeless the band documents how all the people love the area and why they have chosen the area. In turn suggesting to the viewers, mainly fans of the band that the places you live in influence you and that you can live any life so long as you dream big enough and go for it.


Turning my idea for research into a different angle, I thought of this video that doesn’t emulate the area but instead looks at the idea associated with society and peoples behavior. This one focusing on the behavior that was popular and iconic to society at the time. To emphasize this the colour and set-up of the images are portrayed to represent the 70’s scene. Creating a time familiar to then even though it being clear that the scene is posed.

APT with David Moore

After a talk from the first visiting practitioner, David Moore I gathered some notes that I felt were interesting in the way in which he works. These were:

  • Look at the space not what the area is used for
  • Look at how you can use the restrictions instead of allowing them to restrict you
  • The lack of information can be more informative

Later on I had an apt with him about my FMP idea, here I got some suggestions to help my work…

  • Email the people to get insight into their work and their thoughts on the subject.
  • Look into the background of the Specials and their effect on the area.
  • Artic Monkey’s bought the pub they first played at in Sheffield now they own a chain of them. (Brian)


APT with Emma Critchley

For a second week of visiting practitioners I heard about Emma Critchley underwater photography. I was interested in how she used the form of water and also looked at the use of interest becomes dependency.

Later on for another apt I had the suggestions of:

  • Deciding which way to direct my work – the change of landscape or the personal response?
  • Look at different music scenes.
  • For personal response get peoples old images and memories if can and show them as how it was to how it is now



While the third practitioner was David Rule I found his work to be quite interesting in terms of how he laid out his book and how he created his work based on text, giving me the idea to do this style of thing for explaining the venue from what I came across for the locations.

However, with an apt I was suggested some work in which to look at. These were:

Look at the work of David Campany

It was also suggested by Olly Wood that I spoke to Jason Scott Tilley about the project he worked on based around music when Coventry was popular in the charts.


With looking at my feedback from my apt’s I turned to searching out information


Artic Monkey’s buying a pub this I found to be interested as it gave the impression of how the musician’s have become the owner’s of music venue’s so to help build more of a popular chain of venue’s to support up and coming artists and to give a different option to being the regular night club suggesting that the members of the band are looking to keep hold of a heritage as there is not much option for live music and recorded dj style.


While with reading this article I came across an explanation that encapsulated why The Special’s became popular at the point of their career as the lyric’s such as “No Job’s to be found in this country” explained the way in which  Coventry had gone from doing so well to being that they had no industries and families were falling apart, only as suggested this was not just Coventry that were like it but also the other cities or places throughout the U.K. Making it that even though everywhere was going through the same issue the Special’s helped put Coventry on the map as they were prepared to speak out against the issues of the time. This is also interesting as the song becomes popular although the idea lies that even nowadays the song is still poignant nowadays as it was back then even though there is over 30 years difference between the times even though the country has moved forward. Suggesting the idea that the country is in a sense of a ground hog day.


With being suggested to look at the essays of David Campany I looked to see what ones there was that could influence my work. Here I came across Architecture as Photography; I found this interesting as it pretty much summed up my project. Here it gave an understanding of a comparison between photography and architecture where the photograph can be held but a building can’t yet even with this a building can be used and given a different meaning and interpretation based on what the place or image is used for. Resonating the idea with me that a building is like a mempory.

proposal 2

Screen Shot 2015-05-20 at 03.39.49


From what I had written already informing the class of my project I decided to respond to these question and thoughts to inform myself and my work.


Physical or digital – depends how the project turns out but I am thinking more of digital within the idea of a zine or a portfolio of small images where the portfolio is in fact a cd case that holds multiple cd’s.


Insider or outsider – again I am not sure I would like to consider both however I would like to work on the outside as I feel this option isn’t looked at as much as the inside of buildings is but this will also depend on how the project turns out once I start shooting.


Represent the music scene without the music – this is an interesting angle that I think I might build into my work.


In terms of boundaries I know that I can’t capture all of the venues throughout the country so I have decided to narrow my work down to being based on the West Midlands.



With considering with where to shoot I felt the best option for my work was to capture the West Midlands as it has a rich sense of music within the area. This is usually a well-represented theme of … come from here so felt it would be a strong concept for my work. Especially as the range of areas would give a different amount of places due to this I decided my focus would be the immediate area and that I could frequent most easily and repeatedly at any point giving me a wide area to cover but at the same narrowing it down to set a boundary.




music and memory

Before I looked into what the music industry was like with the area of West Midland’s over all I felt a good place to start would be with the idea of memory. This started off with me thinking about the books I had looked at for my research during my symposium as I felt it influenced with me especially as the idea of the high use of music meant that it related more with an idea of time and it managed to stick with people more due to the use of overplaying the song’s that were more recent. At the same time the impression of subculture or political songs were about an idea of understanding, a sense of we are not going to stand for these actions any more and we want to rebel and even though the punk ethos only lasted for a short time the idea of being able to connect with people or the same interest meant that the members of the subculture weren’t alone but more of trying to relate to others and the way they felt at the time, the way society and the condition of the country was.

Leading me on to looking at articles where I found one called Music and Memories, this article spoke of how the first action to do once we’ve been isolated from the norm of society is to turn to music and explained the idea that music is so important as it is everywhere we go whether shopping or just having a tv on. This then followed on to an in-depth study about testing students about how they are influenced through music by looking at what songs were popular when the people were young and how the song plays on the mind based on memory it sparks and how whether they like or dislike the song is based on the memory associated with it. In turn giving an impression of people is influenced by what they remember and in turn this creates their taste and style.

While with another article by the BBC called “Why does music evoke memories?” the idea of music being an influence on memory is explained as being the more we hear the song the more it then holds an influence a song that represents part of someone’s life meaning the person can recall memories more through hearing a song than what they can with trying to just think of the memories without any use of music.

The final article that I looked at called “Music and the Brain” suggested a more insightful response in this I found out that Albert Einsteen managed to become a scientist through the use of music and used music to help understand his equations. While a way of encouraging intelligence is to use music as studies suggest that the music encourages holding a memory and can encourage growth in any living organism.


100 UK Music Venues Revealed

Afterwards I moved on to look at what venues were most popular where I found a list that had been compiled by PRS for Music. With looking through this list I found that Birmingham 02 Academy was in the top 10. Along with HMV Institute, Symphony Hall, Birmingham Town Hall, The Slade Rooms and Huntingdon Hall all making appearance. This I found interesting as with some like the o2 academy it was expected from being one of the most popular venues however at the same time unknown venues were also included making me think that the reason for it was based on the times that had been had was something special and showed that that was more popular through the memories rather than just the usual place to go.

Redditch is Least Musical Place in the UK

Through this paper it was shown of where in the U.K. was the most and least musical places and how this was all dependent on a range of aspects including financial background and the education and understanding. Giving a sense of the areas musicial heritage and support isn’t encouraged as much in this area even though some well known names have come from the place. This in turn adds an interesting twist being that many people of Redditch classes themselves as Brummies but also the area is based within Worcester, adding an interesting twist when the place is so close to the two areas that are predominant within the music scene and have some of the best venues but even still with well known names coming from the place the area still lacks a musical connection.

Redditch shoot

This led me to go and do a shoot in Redditch as I felt there must be some connection to music and I felt it would be the best place to start with looking at what remains being that the connection that Redditch once had has faded away.

When I got there though I found that there was quite a bit of a musical influence on the area, this was through quite a few of the shops having a link through being called things like Mambo Number 5. This I was not expecting due to the idea that the area doesn’t have that much representation any more.

With doing the shoot though I found it went quite well as I managed to get some images that were interesting however I felt they were not that special as there was many intruding objects and not much in the area to shoot. From this though I did get this image as a starting point.  However, due to the car it was not how I wanted.


Aferwards I had an apt with my lecturer Anthony, with speaking to him about the image it was suggested that I captured the image with a different lighting as my image focused on daytime but it would be much stronger to capture at sunset. Also suggested was that I captured the scene with no one in the area so to create a sense of emptiness.


With then looking to move to a more musically influenced area I decided to look into the area of Birmingham’s music scene.   With previously having visited the Home of Metal based on Birmingham’s music scene I felt this was insightful to me in understanding the area’s scene especially as it gave an insight into why the area is popular within the music scene.

IMG_4460 IMG_4462

However, to look further into the scene I searched to see what I could find based on the music venues within Birmingham, especially as some many of the venues are highly praised. Here I came across an article based on a guide and insight of how well established each venue was. This in turn gave an impression of how well established each place is and how prominent the venue is within the area as compared to other highly rated places in terms of logistics. To go alongside this I also found a article that suggested Birmingham’s best 10 venues giving a sense of difference between the two as it showed more of Birmingham’s most frequented and publicized venues where as the other article looked at more of a consideration for the unknown smaller venues.

In turn with this in mind I visited a website I had viewed before that listed all the venues in Birmingham giving me a full list of places in which to view. Creating my list towards the shoot.

Proposal 3

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After revising my proposal I looked to do a shoot within the area of Birmingham. Although being that I had come up with a large list of places to visit I decided to split them over multiple days. Focusing my shoot around the city center I look to document the venues and any pieces like leaflets that are left to do with the scene. Although this shoot went well I did however get a large amount of images but with knowing I had some time I felt I would be able to capture the rest of the images within another shoot as there were so many locations of which to visit.


Speaking to Anthony again about my work he suggested that I try and play more with creating my image as it was not strong enough and did not represent the scene the way in which it could. This I felt was true as the scenes were quite busy and even though the places had a sense of entertainment involved they didn’t spring out at me for any special images.


With doing another shoot I then returned to the city center to capture more images this shoot I was unsatisfied with while I was shooting as even though I managed to capture some places that are still used such as the 02 academy some locations were nothing like they once were and did not connect to the project at all as compared to shooting any building. This shoot left me unhappy.


With giving it one more shot in Birmingham I decided to visit some of Birmingham’s most prominent venues that had also been mentioned in the articles as suggestions of some of the best venues in Birmingham. However, these venues were more of Birmingham’s music scene here and now rather than what remains’ of a music scene. So even though I had quite a few venues left to go in Birmingham I felt that the area was still too wide and I need to narrow down my idea more. Keeping to my 3rd proposal I decided to stick to it and instead narrow down the location to just Coventry a place I had not shot the music scene of before.



Before shooting any images I decided to visit the music museum, here I gained a lot of information of the local music scene of Coventry, as it resembled pieces of information that had created iconic times within Coventry. However with this I was also confused as a lot of the features included I felt did not really cover the scene of Coventry much as was a one off visit or someone passed through so felt the museum was not of much help to me. However, in with this I did see a timeline that was insightful and gave me the idea of using time through my work to help me portray the time difference within my images.

David Moore Revisit

With a revisit from David Moore the main point that I was told was that I needed to start shooting soon. That way I could move my work forward as I’d be able to narrow down my style and create my images to be able to see how the images would turn out within my mind’s eye.

Along with this apt I also had an apt with my lecturer Anthony. Here I showed him some images that I had shot in Redditch. From this I got the feedback of my images did not really show anything instead were just a range of places that had music up on them. Due to this I would need to shoot more but one of the locations, a music shop and music venue in one would be worth revisiting again but using a different time of day and light as that would impact on my images quite a bit. In turn I should try shooting it at dawn as that would make the sky more powerful and give a different tone to my images. In addition, it is important for me to capture the venues without people or cars within them, that way I would get a sense of emptiness. It was also suggested that my images would also need more play as at the time they looked like architectural shots rather than anything to do with entertainment so it might be worth trying to do something experimental like what Gillian Wearing had done with Dancing in Peckham.

Location research

This lead me on to looking for some research into Coventry’s music scene here I found many blogs that had been created in terms of the subject. These were hard to follow as they were not complete and were being spread out on to different sites plus I needed to scroll through each blog to the end to be able to find the information I needed making it a daunting challenge and hard to focus on with there being so much information on the sites. However, between the use of a site called Hobo on Coventry Music Archive Blog I managed to build up a lot of history from the site while Rex Borough’s website also added to the insight on the website to give me an indepth background and list of locations. Due to  the extensive list though I felt the best option was to try and narrow my list down again, this made me consider how none of the venues that use live music are based in the city center but instead are on the outskirts but are within the cv1 postcode, This made me decide to focus on live music venues within the area of CV1 to show how they now appear.

Cov  Memories

When looking for blogs or websites dedicated to Coventry’s music scene I came across a handful of forums based on reminiscing these included Retro wow, a style that I preferred as it reminded me of a style of diary that I felt added a sense of an intimacy. While Coventry Memories, Historic Coventry Forum and Fantazia gave comical stories associated with the times at the locations. Although I did not want to use someone else’s work so I decided instead of using any of their information I’d collect the gig dates, double check them with the band’s website to make sure. Then input this information while looking at the places the people reminiscing mentioned made me decide to use the venues as I felt they were the key ones being that people were reminiscing over so should build up the select locations to shoot.


Deciding that the area I wanted to cover was too big I decided to narrow it down to being just Coventry this was because I had done many shoots in Birmingham before so wanted to try somewhere new for the project. Where as up till now I had not looked at Coventry’s music scene and being that I was at the university I felt this might, as will be the route I choose that way it is created as a sort of local project.


Shoot 4 –Revisit of Locations

For this I felt that the shoot was too far out and covered too much of a large area though however when looking at forum’s I came across an interesting point of how there’s not really any venue’s in the city center itself but instead are on the outskirts even though they are still in the CV1 area. This narrowed my shoot down even further to this point. This led to me focusing on a range of locations so decided to go for about 2 places of each I could show a comparison between the two venues but show the venues over time.


With having already captured images but feeling that my idea was still all over the place and that the light was too bright on my images that it had caused a glare I decided to go to one of the venues I had missed and shoot it using a hood to block the light out. This I found worked well to a certain extent but also meant I was not able to zoom in and out without capturing a black ring around my image. However, in the process I did get one image that I was happy with so this created the basis for my work and has led to me wanting to capture my image like this one. However, in the process I also found that the places I had chosen for my work had all been given a new identity.  Giving me the idea that I would change the title of my project from being “What Remains?” to Another Time, Another Place” that way suggesting that the locations were once music venues but are not the ones they were back then or are not a music venue at all any more.


From now finally having one image I was happy with I decided to use my list to revisit other locations so I could capture the venues as I had captured them within the image that I was now happy with.



SHOOT 7 – 24TH

With going back to Coventry to shoot as it was a duller day I managed to capture more images as people weren’t out as much however with this I still had to wait around for the right lighting conditions and for people to be out of my way.



With finally being happy with how my work was going and having recalled Anthony saying how important the lighting was I decided to visit a few other places but captures the venues at night as this was the time when the gig’s took place. For this I decided to start with War Memorial park where of had Taryn Simon’s project Innocent Land’s in mind as I thought I could try capturing the image of an empty space but maybe show impressions in the ground as it is used often and holds the Godiva festival one weekend a year.

SHOOT 9 – 26TH

From going out to do a shoot I managed to capture images with different sky conditions. With this I found that a lot of my images did not work as the sky was too blue and gave too much of an upbeat day. However, I did manage to capture some with a dull tone when the sky wasn’t blue. This gave me of a rundown forgetting look so which I felt worked better.

SHOOT 10 –

From the weather conditions yesterday I decided it be best for me to go out and shoot again today, as it was duller, this I found worked better for me and managed to give me more images that suited the way my final images have started turning out.

SHOOT 11 –28TH

Going out to get some more images I found that one of the places I was trying to shoot had a car parked there. This had turned up from the shoot from the night before when I was shooting and was sat there over the amount of time allocated for the car to be there, leading me to cut my shoot short as I was not able to shoot the location I wanted and being that the Kasbah was also busy when I went round it meant that the venues were not able to be captured. This led to me visiting the locations for the next few days however in the process I found the car was still sat in the same place and that the owner found it more of funny that they were creating difficulties led to me to cut the venue out of the list when I came across another venue on the list.

Emma Critchley and David Rule Return

With two mentors being in I managed to get an apt with both. First off was David Rule, this apt did not start well as I was late seated for my apt as he was running late throughout the day so would start asking where people were as the class were scattered throughout the building. Meaning that when it came to being my apt he was still speaking to people in the list before me so I waited for when he asked where I was as he’d done up till that point by approaching people. Unaware that he had caught up to my apt and not knowing he was asking where I was even though I was seated close by I was asked why I wasn’t seated at his table for my apt meaning that I felt uncomfortable at the beginning of the apt.

With then talking to him I showed him a narrowed down list of my images for the final cut. Some of these he was happy with however ever though I said due to a malfunction with my own camera on my last shoot as I couldn’t get my images to go in focus at all even when testing my camera on auto to try and solve the issue, my images were appearing out of focus. After the shoot I had manage to sort it though so was going to revisit the location. Due to this some images I was going to reshoot but the concept for how they would appear was in the image, it was just out of focus.

While also being asked about why my images weren’t taken from the same angle. Of which the reason was because I felt the main focus of the image should be the door as that was the part where people queued to get into the shows and where the people entered the place to create the memories. From this I wanted that to be the main focus but still get the whole building in.

However, these images had all got a different focal length that was close to each other but had some sense of difference or in the taller buildings meant an angle shooting up from the ground. To this it was suggested I tried reshooting them again so to keep the same conformity throughout. However, having already considered this and my original plan was to shoot like this I informed David that I had tried it and even though with some it was possible, with others it wasn’t as for example “The Dog” is located in the shopping center and has a phone box located meters from it’s entrance due to this I wasn’t able to move further back to what I had as the phone box was in my way but I can work round it with my image as I had captured my image with a wider angle so to be able to crop it as I didn’t want my image to fit perfectly at the time as it was going to be a full page spread and I didn’t want white edges of the paper when printing so I had kept extra of the surrounding allowing the image to run into the bleed on the paper. Due to this it meant my image would be closer and would fit the same depth more. To this I got the response of it sounds like you’re just making excuses, of which I never do as I don’t feel the need to use excuses and felt was a rude remark leading me to wanting the apt to be over with as I felt that David was intentionally trying not to be helpful but instead deciding more of it was his way and not considering that the area is a built up place. This led to me responding with no I went there with the idea as what you have suggested in the first place but it was not possible to do as the phone box would have taken up more of the image than the focus of my image as it was directly in front of the door meaning that the photo would have been unsuccessful and pointless as it wouldn’t capture the venue but the intruding phone box. Leading to David then suggesting to move to the side to capture from a different angle and if the phone box was in then it was. Even though in turn this would make it that the image then didn’t fit with the other selection to go with it. Making me say I was keep the image as I was happy with it and felt it worked well within the set that I had chosen as my final images so far.

However, as a response I was told to try a reshoot it again but using a prime lens and reshoot the location.

As for Emma Critchley’s apt I felt this went better as she was more helpful and insightful. Here we spoke more about the text option and was told to consider how I placed the text as it was as important as the image and how would the design of the text be. For which I have not decided as of yet but I am considering using fonts and colour that represent the decade and style otherwise I am using the one basic style but it would depend on how it turns when trying it out alongside each other.

While in terms of my imagery it was suggested that I tried either a tilt-shift lens or a prime lens. Neither of these I had used before but being that prime had been suggested twice and even with the other apt not going well I was still open to the idea of practice to get the images as I wanted them. Leading me to ask about them where I found out the tilt shift would focus on what I wanted but also look up to the whole building. While the prime lens would mean that I could not alter the lens so I would have to work round it to be able to get the images, as I wanted them.





APT with Anthony









APT with Anthony

Use poster


Select images

With collecting the images together I have managed to narrow my options down to these select ones.


When it came to editing my images I decided to try some different style so through using the contrast and the clarity I altered my images to make them look more of a graphical style. This was so to give more of a renascent feel however this did not work as I planned.  So instead I decided to try the option of putting the clarity low so it would give more of a washed out effect in turn making my images look more like faded memories. With trying these options though I felt the images did not work out as I wanted them to so I decided to keep them as a raw option.


For the layout I considered the layout off my music program. As I felt and knew throughout the project that I wanted my work to be a book I felt the idea of a zine or a music program would fit best with my work.

IMG_4455 IMG_4457 IMG_4456 With viewing a music program I owned I decided I wanted to keep the theme of the text being neat but holding a sense of music. Yet at the same time I wanted it to also hold a neat feel making me use a squared layout that also used a square style keeping it in line with the other page.

However, with knowing that a music program is 30cm x 30cm I felt it did not work best with my images so I decided to change it to being an a3 size as it only altered the length.

Final piece

This is the final book that I created….


To go alongside my book as I felt it was not a main focal piece enough for it to stand on it’s own I decided to print an image as a poster. At first this was going to be an image of 2-tone graffiti being put on the walls of the main market as a way of representing the heritage so to have a sense of a juxtaposition where the main image advertises the heritage of the music scene however is nothing connected with the scene while yards away is an abandoned building that was the birth place to the 2-tone scene that is left empty and run down. Making my work think why is a scene that has nothing connected to the music considered more for the music compared to the place that is at the epicenter of the scene. Yet with speaking it through with Emma Critchley and Anthony I was told to drop this idea as the image was something for a separate project rather than fitting with this project. Leading me to ask Anthony’s opinion while in an apt where he suggested this image.

In turn allowing me to show the emptiness of the area during the day through the day using the book while at night the emptiness is shown through the poster.

With printing the pictures though I found that the library was not working properly so when it came to printing my images came out really dark. This led to me altering my image to see how it would work on the printer, in turn sending my image orange from the street lights so I decided before going to the printers I would take a trip to snappy snaps to get some test images printed to see how my images would turn out from printing there, making me decide on the original image as it looked more natural.


With trying to get my images, as I wanted them I kept putting off my deadline so that it went further back to the hand in date. In doing this I looked for local options that was I would not have to consider the time for postage as I could just collect my book. From this I came up with this list


Bobs books

Heron press – 0121 457 4810 – Monday to friday

Genie printing – 0121 224 4949

Print creative ltd –

Print design team –

Printcolour – do work for students

Print leaf – account suspended

Solo press – print online. Largest is a4 – very cheap

Minutemanpress   – no brochures etc

Stuprint – might be worth trying

Berrington print

We cost online – too expensive

Love 2 print – don’t print less that 50. Prints tickets

Service point – prints cd covers – too expensive

Kalkwik – don’t print

Hannah print – only print in quantity

Hello print – only print in large quantity

From this I decided to contact Print Colour with this I managed to get it arranged so to get my work printed by the Wednesday night. However, due to difficulties through InDesign causing unusual alterations on my images and text I was not able to send my work off.

With visiting the printers on the Friday I managed to get it sorted to get my images sorted to be ready for collection on the Monday afternoon. However, with contacting them on the Monday I found that my prints would not be ready so with visiting them again I found that even though the file I had saved all my images and text, as I wanted it. However, with putting it in their computer my text was becoming spaced and was not keeping hold of the font even though it was showing on my computer when I opened the same file and the file was saved as a pdf. Due to this it lead to spending two hours at the printers trying to sort a file where indesign did not try pixelating my images or removing the font type. This led to my images not being ready until the night before the deadline but I decided to go with it as I felt it be better pushing the limit rather than having an incorrect final product.

From this I got these two books… a small a5 version, a large a3 version and an a2 image of which from viewing the images I decide to have my main ones as the a5 book and the a2 poster.


After creating all my work I have decided to total up how much it cost me, here I managed to spend

about £100 on travel,

£20 on a new memory card £90 on printing

Mount board £5

Making it that my work was much cheaper than I expected however if I had more time it would cost me extra as I ran out of time before I tried to capture my images on film.

How final proposal has changed from the first

Since my first proposal my work has kept to the same theme of being about music and the identity within the architecture. However, when it started it was about the area in general and what remained yet over time and with an influence by different artists including Bernhard and Hilla Becher as well as David Spero my images have become to be narrowed down from the while of the whole of the West Midlands to being within the area of CV1 and instead of covering all of the surroundings for what remains my project has instead turned to being more or an architecture based project. In turn allowing me to do a project I enjoy through a way that is new to me.