221.157 Independent Study Notes (as a single page)

221.157 Independent Study Week #1

Week #1 – wb 28th February 2022

Week #1 Monday Tasks

  1. Next class bring your DSLR camera (if you have one) to the Zoom class.  
  2. Watch the lectures ‘Lens photographic precedents’ and ‘Exposure and Photographic Conventions’.  
  3. Start working on your assignment – you’ve only got 6 weeks and remember 14 hours a week outside of class!
  4. Best way to come up with ideas is to get out there with your camera.
  5. Start doing research into photographers who interest you.

Week #1 Thursday Tasks

  1. Make sure you have watched ‘Week 2’ required videos and make notes. 
  2. Complete the ‘Camera Tasks’ sheet. 
  3. Make your own images that use these ‘photographic conventions’: scale, repetition, depth of field, dynamic composition etc. 
  4. Complete white balance task. 
  5. Start to photograph. 
  6. Bring photos to class on Monday / Tuesday. 

Monday Actions

1. Camera

Dug out my old EOS 20D SLRs, which I don’t shoot all that often given the X100T is currently “my precious”.

Cleaned lenses, charged batteries, etc.

2. Watching

Watched both videos. Fortunately nothing new to me as a film photographer – happy to see transferrable skills!

3. Assignment

Got an Adobe CC license.

Started looking at Days Bay as my subject.

Found recent images and started to look at the modern versions of Photoshop, etc.

4. Photography

Went out at took some photos! See below for contact sheets and edits.

5. Research

Looking at photographers whose work I might like to reference?

Andreas Gursky? Hiroshi Sugimoto?

Thursday Actions

1. Watching

Confirmed: watched the videos and did the required reading.

2. Camera Tasks

Done – have done this before.

3. Shooting “conventions”

See below – part of my project shooting

4. White Balance

I set up a cup of colourful pens on a sheet of brown sugar paper, which is pretty close to neutral, then photographed in various lighting condititions.

5. Photography

See below for contact sheets and edits.

6. Bring photos


Contact Sheets

3rd March


This week’s best edits

Previously taken photos, edited for this project

221.157 Independent Study Week #2

Week #2 – wb 7th March 2022

Week #2 Tasks

  1. Go to the library and complete the Library Task: Learning to Look: A format for looking at and talking about photography
  2. Watch ‘Exposure in relation to digital’ and ‘Adobe Camera Raw software workflow – editing your images pt. 2’ videos (found in week 10)
  3. Read and take notes on ‘Photography: The Key Concepts’ by David Bate.  
  4. Think about the feedback you received during your presentation and start to experiment. 
  5. Bring photos to class on Monday/Tuesday to work with. 

Week #2 Actions

1. Library

Did this with my group. This is included in the submission Zip file.

2. Watch videos

Did this!

3. Read and take notes

Again, part of the submission Zip file.

4. Consider feedback

Started to incorporate this, in homing in on my subject and starting to think about how I want to tell a story. At this stage, sticking with Days Bay Off Season.

5. Bring photos

See below for this week’s contact sheets and edits.

Took these to class.

Contact Sheets

8th March


11th March


This week’s best edits

221.157 Independent Study Week #3

Week #3 – wb 14th March 2022

Week #3 Tasks

  1. Complete the David Bate ‘The Key Concepts Reading Tasks’.
  2. Bring together your group response to the Library Task and David Bate The Key Concepts Reading Task in a presentation (PowerPoint) to present in your groups in the following class.
  3. Keep shooting and editing.

Week #3 Actions

1. Reading Tasks

Included in submission Zip file.

2. Prepare presentation

Included in submission Zip file.

3. Photography

See below for this week’s contact sheets and edits.

Feedback from Helen

Submitted this on 17th March:

Feedback received:

Thanks for sending these through, especially as they were small enough to open, I particularly liked the contrast of jpgs 3 and 4 and that there no people at all in the images.  I think the connection to the sea is really important, although that maybe that I … don’t have the same immediate connection to the coast.  The details don’t attract me as much, but a grid of images like that could be interesting.

Contact Sheets

17th March


This week’s best edits

221.157 Independent Study Week #4

Week #4 – wb 21st March 2022

Week #4 Tasks

Continue to photograph and develop the project after the feedback from your critique

Week #4 Actions

See below for contact sheets and edits.

Contact Sheets

22nd March


27th March

This week’s best edits

221.157 Independent Study Week #5

Week #5 – wb 28th March 2022

Week #5 Tasks

Just one: keep shooting and editing.

Week #5 Actions

See below for contact sheets and edits.

Feedback from Helen

Submitted this on 28th March:

Feedback received:

I like the idea of the horizon being consistent across the series.  Your final submission is 3 – 5 images so you will need to ditch one, probably one of the two images in the middle of the series as they’re really similar.  I’d be inclined to put the stormiest image, the one on the far right, in the middle with the two good weather images either side and than the two remaining on each end and would choose either the afore mentioned stormy image, or the image currently on the left as your main image.

Contact Sheets

28th March


29th March


30th March


31st March


2nd April


This week’s best edits

221.157 Independent Study Week #6

Week #6 – wb 4th April 2022

No tasks this week – prepare for presentation on the project!

This is the last week of the course, so it’s also a chance to reflect, as well as wrapping up the project.

Check-in: where am I up to?

  • I did shoots on the following dates:
  1. 3rd March
  2. 8th March
  3. 11th March
  4. 17th March
  5. 22nd March
  6. 27th March
  7. 28th March
  8. 29th March
  9. 30th March
  10. 31st March
  11. 2nd April
  • Shot over 700 discreet images.
  • Selected 62 images and edited them.
  • Selected 7 images for my final piece (3 to form a triptych, plus 4 supporting images).

Reflections on my final series of images.

This is kind of important, I guess, What do I think about my final selection of images, the layout, the overall impression?

Firstly, I am proud of the images. I think they’re some of the best I’ve taken in many years of (mostly film) photography. I also think I now have something of a handle on black and white digital processing, and am getting something of the “pop” that I’ve not managed to achieve before.

The images get across the feelings that I was hoping to capture – the quiet, calmness of off-season Days Bay. The quality and variability of the light; the difference that weather makes to the state of the sea, and so on.

My supporting images also gave me a chance to show some of the ephemera of the bay, both things humans have built, and that the sea has deposited. This was also a chance to look at the evolved, weathered aspects of objects too.

Tasks for this week

N/A – this is the week to edit and wrap up the project.

Contact Sheets

N/A – this is the week to edit and wrap up the project.

This week’s best edits

The general editing of my individual images was complete by this point. Instead, I worked on tweaking the images to do things like line up the horizon, and also adjusting the tonal balance between the images so that they work better as a triptych. I wanted a light, calm flow from the left through the sequence to darker, stormier mood at right.

For the secondary images, there were more choices for layout. I’m favouring a vertical layout, but may have a dollar each way and do a kind of up-down-up-down *o*o kind of thing.

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