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Assessment Results

On July 27, 2015 my assessment results arrived. I had almost forgotten about the looming result deadline, so it was a bit of an anti-climax when I saw an announcement on the Facegroup Level 1 group that the results were in. I checked my email and found a results letter and a marksheet waiting for me.

The results letter confirmed Formal Assessment – PASS. Forty credits now earned – yay! The mark sheet gives a breakdown for the various assessment criteria as well as some helpful comments. All in all, I am really satisfied with the grade I achieved. The assessors comments are below and my comments are in italics.

Demonstration of technical and visual skills (materials, techniques, observational skills, visual awareness, design and compositional skills)

Very competent technical and visual skills.

Thank you.

Quality of Outcome (content, application of knowledge, presentation of work in a coherent manner, discernment, conceptualisation of thoughts, communication of ideas)

Competent realisation of ideas, presented well, showing consistency in judgement. Effective grasp of ideas and communication of visual ideas.

I’m happy with this.

Demonstration of Creativity (imagination, experimentation, invention, development of a personal voice)

Some evidence of creativity, little evidence of risk-taking with a few imaginative outcomes, some evidence of a developing personal voice.

This is the piece that I probably struggle with the most. I’m happy the assessors can see evidence of a personal voice developing – it is not obvious to me yet as I still feel all over the map.

Context (reflection, research, critical thinking)

Evidence of self-reflection and research, and satisfactory ability to analyse and synthesise information.

I know there is room for improvement here and it will come with more studies.

Overall Comments and Feed Forward
You presented a really organised and considered overview of your progress through this module which meant that it was very easy to follow your progress for assessment. It is also clear that you have a good eye for a formally well considered image and an improving grasp of the kinds of colour and feel in a photograph that interests you.

Thank you.

That said, you can afford to be much bolder with the way you interact with your subject matter and this is exemplified in assignment 5. Here you have presented an interesting and considered set of landscape images but there is no sense that you have conceptually or visually researched this interesting site as thoroughly as you might. Try to immerse yourself FULLY with your subject matter, this will mean that you will move your ideas and approach towards a much more refined and considered outcome.

I’m going to have to work on this and figure out how to do this. Hopefully there will be an improvement by the end of the next module.

Well this is my last posting for The Art of Photography. I have now signed up for Context and Narrative. To everyone who has followed this blog, I thank you sincerely for your interest and support and invite you to follow my photographic journey in my new blog https://lyndakuitphotographycn.wordpress.com/ .

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Note to the Assessors

Dear Assessors,

Thank you for taking the time to evaluate my work.

My learning log is online and can be located at: https://lyndakuitphotography.wordpress.com/. The blog is in descending date order (standard blog format), however, I have arranged the assignments so that they can be viewed in consecutive order. Each assignment’s post begins with the assignment, followed by the tutor feedback and my reflections and ends with any revision/rework that I have done as a result of the tutor feedback.

To access each assignment, tutor feedback and any revisions done, please click on the assignment number you wish to view on the menu at the top and you will be able to scroll in consecutive order.

My research is accessible by going to the submenus under Research and Reflection on the menu at the top of the blog as illustrated below. Research relevant to each assignment is mentioned in my assignment write up and is hyperlinked to the relevant posts as well.

Included in my submission package are:

  • the contact sheets of prints for each assignment as well as the final reworks or revisions. Contact sheets are clearly labeled on the back of each sheet.
  • a selection of four (4) prints from assignments 1, 2 and 4 and five (5) prints from assignments 3 and 5 (total of 22). Prints are clearly labeled on the back of each print.
  • a mockup of assignment 5
  • all five (5) tutor reports
  • two (2) supplementary physical learning logs which I have mainly used for inspirational images and study notes.

Thank you.

Reflections on The Art of Photography

As the time draws near for assessment, I will briefly reflect on my studies while doing The Art of Photography this past year. I have enjoyed the course immensely and learned a lot from it. I came into it expecting it to be a little more technical than it was, but I have really enjoyed the discoveries of new photographers, going to exhibitions (which was something quite new to me) and all the various exercises and assignments. My fellow students on the Facebook Level 1 group have been fantastic and very supportive. It is great that we have formed a bit of a cohort. I particularly like the way knowledge is shared on this group. My special thanks to fellow student, Holly Woodward for setting up the group. She has done an amazing job. My thanks as well to my tutor, Robert Enoch, for the constructive criticism of my work. Sometimes the criticism was hard to take, but in retrospect it was necessary and right. I like the freedom that distance learning affords me. I enjoy working at my own pace, although it does require quite a lot of self-discipline. So I will touch on a few points below that have stood out for me over the course of this past year. More in-depth reflections can be read under each assignments’ tab.

Demonstration of technical and visual skills (materials, techniques, observational skills, visual awareness, design and compositional skills)

My observational skills, visual awareness, design and compositional skills have improved tremendously since the start of the course. I had a fairly good idea of composition when I started the course, but feel that with slowing down and taking my time more in setting up my shots I have taken care to check to the edges of my frame more carefully. This has now become a habit, which is a very good thing.

Quality of Outcome (content, application of knowledge, presentation of work in a coherent manner, discernment, conceptualisation of thoughts, communication of ideas)

During the length of the course I have become comfortable with using my blog for personal reflections. I used to set up websites in Dreamweaver for work purposes so getting to grips with WordPress’s layout and navigation was a not a steep learning curve for me. At times I still struggle to conceptualise my thoughts properly – the words are there but they just don’t want to come out in the right way, but this has improved quite a bit since the start of the course and I know this will improve the more familiar I become with reading and commenting on aesthetic aspects of photography and pick up the relevant academic language. I haven’t done any serious lengthy writing since the mid 80’s and I’m finding that I quite enjoy these reflections and analyses. I have managed to brush up my LightRoom digital darkroom skills and have seen the improvement that a little simple post processing can do to a photograph to take it to another level. My least successful assignment would be Assignment 2. Initially I had planned on doing the elements of design through landscape of Alaska, but the thought of possibly having to redo parts of the assignment forced me to change my plan and I decided to do raw materials of food instead. As so often happens in life, usually one’s first instinct is the right one and I should have bitten the bullet and just gone with the Alaskan landscape as originally intended. Notwithstanding though I do feel that I learned a few valuable lessons from my Assignment 2 about lighting and set ups. It also helped to cement the fact that I do not like still life photography, although I will still try and overcome this dislike over time. My most successful assignment I think would be Assignment 5 and it would have been perfect if I had been able to get the close up portrait images that the series lacks. Hopefully I will be able to expand the series in the near future and include those lacking shots.

Demonstration of Creativity (imagination, experimentation, invention, development of a personal voice)

My creativity has definitely come a long way since the start of the course. This is something that I do struggle with. The assignment I had the most fun with was Assignment 4 – Apply Lighting Techniques as there was a lot of experimentation that went on, especially around the colour photographs. It was also the most frustrating assignment in that I had to do things by trial and error and a lot of my ideas didn’t come to fruition, but this was mainly due to lack of equipment and weather. I also enjoyed the narrative exercise at the beginning of part 5 in that I used abstract photograph to tell the story of my husband’s recent illness in the form of a shadow diary. A lot of emotion went into this exercise and this is the first time that I have exposed myself in such a manner and I found it rather liberating. Fellow colleagues at work follow my blog and say that they can see a change in my photography, a maturity that is emerging and I can see this too.

Context (reflection, research, critical thinking)

I have always enjoyed doing research and when I first started the course I asked my tutor what I should research. He replied to me “anything”. So I literally took him at his word and did research on anyone who took my fancy for the first two assignments. During the third assignment I took a more focused direction and concentrated on a couple of photographers that my tutor had recommended to me. However, it was really during the fourth part of the course that I realized that I should be researching photographers and artists who can direct and shape my work in the current assignment. So I concentrated on that approach for the last two assignments and found that things started to fall into place quicker and I found my work becoming a more cohesive unit. I wish I had had this Eureka moment earlier in the course, as it would have made things a lot easier for me. I was fortunate to have two of my reviews picked up and commented on by the photographer and gallery respectively. I find that when I look at images now, I am more introspective of them. I have moved past the “like/don’t like” phase and now can analyse and appreciate the different aspects of the photograph.

Finally but most importantly, my thanks to my patient family members who sometimes accompanied me on various photography outings in all kinds of weather and at all times of day, and to my work colleagues for their encouraging support and comments.

And so I move on to Context and Narrative, my next course where I hope to continue this wonderful journey into photography.