Exhibition Reflection

I am very pleased with the way that the exhibition began. With our display being in the reception area of the college and because we wanted a large open space for people to walk around the team overseeing the HSAD degree show agreed to use it for staging the opening speeches. It did mean that when we arrived, the television screen and our table had both been moved so that a small stage to be erected but we had a quick shuffle about and put them where we were happy with them. We also removed all the tables and chairs from the common areas so that people had the necessary viewing distance needed to get the best view of our images. I was disappointed to see that one of the group had brought in their own table and moved their postcards and pen portrait away from everyone else’s and put them by their own work, this wasn’t what we had a agreed as a group and simply highlighted that they were doing their own thing. We decided to leave it and not cause a fuss at this stage, finally adding a vase of flowers to the table that held our own postcards. Then we were ready.

People were looking around our photographs while they were waiting for the show to open and I could already hear some positive comments.

The show was opened by Douglas Dunn, a poet that studied at Hull University and wrote a book of poems about Terry Street, the street that he lived on while he was here. He is now a professor at St Andrews University in Scotland. He spoke some very encouraging words and then an actor read a couple of his poems before visitors were encouraged to visit some of the other exhibition areas.

I hung around the photography area for about an hour, talking to some of the people that we had invited and generally chatting with visitors. I received some great comments about the exhibition in general with many saying that they hadn’t seen such a strong collection of images at a degree show in a long time and that the large sized prints really showed the photos off at their best quality. A few people had written in our guest book and their comments were also very positive.

Personally, all the comments I received were very encouraging and supportive. People were saying how great my photos looked on the wall and remarking at the detail in them. I did think that maybe a copy of the original painting nearby would have given the photos more context so that they would have required less explanation but perhaps I will do that if I exhibit them again anywhere. I also wondered if I should have had the explanation about my own work next to my photos but in the end I agreed with our decision to not do that and to let people see the work, make their own mind up about it and then come back to it if they wanted to.

I had brought some family along to see the show, including my brother, a tour guide for the National Trust who volunteers around Flatford and encouraged me throughout the course. He was very taken, particularly with The Hay Wain and has offered to purchase it. I think a loan may be better with a promise to return it to me for short periods if I arrange to exhibit it in other places.

I was very pleased to see Roland Gift, singer with the Fine Young Cannibals walking through the degree show even if no one else on the course was old enough to know who he was! One of the group had invited Peter Levy, presenter and reporter at Look North to see the show and he seemed to be pleased to call in after his broadcast.

Before people began to slope off there was time for a few quick photographs of most of the group together for almost the last time.

I had hoped to pop in and see the Year 2 exhibition and another exhibition that launched at the HIP Gallery but I was talking with people so much that I didn’t have time. I went instead to meet up with some family for a celebratory supper feeling quite pleased with myself!

Later on Facebook, I received another string of positive and encouraging comments from people who had not been able to attend the launch event. My work was also among some that caught the eye of one Twitter journalist. I feel quite proud of what I have achieved.




Final Major Project Reflection 20

This week we have been getting ready for the exhibition. Most of the prints have arrived and we couldn’t wait to unwrap them and have a good look at them. I’m actually very pleased with the way mine have turned out. They are very large – the size of two A0 landscapes joined together and the clarity on them is very good. I think that Ditto 4 Design has done an excellent job with the printing.


Made with 360 Panorama app for iPhone

When I arrived, the rest of the class were sitting together in the college reception area waiting, for I don’t know what. They had heard that the tutors were in a meeting

We started today by manoeuvring the prints from the college reception through to a large room where we could lay them all out. Once unwrapped and laid out and lots of mutual flattery and encouragement had been exchanged we began to measure out where the batons were to go. Laura and I did the marking and measuring, working on one print together across a large table while another couple made small etch marks in the back of the prints that would enable the glue to adhere better. Others helped to organise the prints and move them around, using white gloves, so that we could keep working on the table.

While this was going on, someone from the woodwork department was making some split wooden batons from MDF – a rectangle of wood, fitting just shy of the width of the image, that is cut along the length at an angle. One side is adhered to the print, the other side is secured to the wall forming a long ‘hook’ that the print can be dropped into. Another baton is secured at the bottom of the photograph to ensure that it hangs straight.

We again etched the side of the baton that goes against the print to help the adhesion then we used a wood glue to carefully secure the batons to the prints. We had to work quickly and carefully as we only had a few minutes to slide the baton into the perfect position before it dried. We then had to leave it, weighted down, a full 24 hours to fix permanently.

We finished most of the prints, only mine were left unfinished. The longer batons that I need will not be available until next week.

It was a good day and I think we all worked well together, which after all the back and forth that had previously happened on Facebook made a very nice change. Our tutor seemed to be really pleased with the way our final prints looked as a collection so that was encouraging too. I’m feeling quite excited about the exhibition now and look forward to seeing all the photographs hanging on the wall.

Final Major Project Reflection 18

This week we went, as a group to order our prints for the exhibition. Beforehand there was a lot of back and forth on group chat about how to resize our photographs to the correct size. But in the end using Photoshop to crop and resize the image I think we all made it! Amy was working in the morning and was unable to come with us so I had asked her to contact the printer herself and arrange to get her own prints there before hand, which she did.

The photographs I have finally decided to have printed are these.

I had some trouble overlaying the painting on the photograph but one of the other lecturers at college took the time to show me how to use Photoshop and mask layers to create the effect I wanted.

At Ditto 4 Design we took it in turns to download our final photographs and have the designer there check that they were in the right format and see if there were any issues or changes that needed to be made before we paid for our prints and double checked delivery arrangements. It all went surprisingly smoothly and was actually quite fun!

The group with Lindsay at Ditto 4 Design

There had been some discussion on group chat about the need for postcards/business cards at the exhibition, mostly from one person who didn’t want them. In class we had previously agreed that we would all have some postcards printed so while we were at Ditto 4 Design we ordered those too.

These are my postcards:

Natalie has ordered our names in vinyl lettering so we squared up money with her and ticked that job off the list of things to do.

We had another chat about getting some floor stickers for the reception area floor at the exhibition. I thought we had agreed it in class but on group chat a few people were dissenting so Anete and I wanted us to come to an agreement once and for all. It turns out that only Anete and I thought it was a good idea, everyone else wasn’t really bothered and when someone suggested that they would be ok with it if someone else paid for it I thought it was time to draw a line under the idea. We took a quick vote and made the decision not to go ahead with any floor stickers.

As I missed last week’s class, being on the way to Hannah and Mike’s wedding in Oxfordshire, I also took the opportunity to catch up on what I had missed. Not a lot apparently! There are a few dates that everyone had agreed to come into college and prepare the prints for hanging, which Anete passed on to me, but that is all.

It has actually been quite a tough week. One person has not been coming to class, not been part of the decision making and is countering every choice we have made with the argument “Well I haven’t agreed to that!” In the end one or two people weighed into the conversation with some quite strong words and it seems that they have finally come around. During what has actually been a very busy week I have found all the tension quite draining.

G F Smith

Yesterday Anete and I went over to G F Smith to talk to them about printing and framing some photographs for a second exhibition that we would like to do. Whether we do it or not depends entirely on the cost and so we thought a brief chat with one of the members of staff that came to talk to us at college last year might be a good idea.

We were welcomed into the office and immediately offered a tour of the photographic part of the factory. Linked servers allow the photographs and photographic album/book pages that are received into the Sales office to be sent across to the factory. These are then fed into ‘Thelma’ and ‘Louise’, the two photographic printers. We also watched as the technician changed a roll of photographic paper inside the ‘dark room’ area of the machine before he checked on the levels in the chemical baths. He showed us also where the machines dry the paper so that the finished print comes up ready to be moved on to the next stage.

A team of people put the books together with one person guillotining the photographic pages precisely and then individually creasing every page. Another uses an air gun to clean the pages of any dust and places them with boards between. The boards are slightly tacky and when heated in an oven the glue firmly adheres to the pages. The books are allowed to cool down naturally and are pressed overnight before being passed to the packing area where the cover is added and they are placed in a presentation box before being sent to the customer.

It was a really interesting experience and the care and pride that goes into making these books is incredible. We were shown two books that had been pulled and reprinted because they had the tiniest flaw on them. These flaws were so small and hard to see but the team were adamant that the books would be perfect when they were delivered to the customer. I found it very reassuring that they would take as much care over my prints and books as I would.

They are going to quote us for some prints and frames and we have offered to display some of their promotional material in exchange for a discount.

Photo Marshmallows

I’m always on the lookout to do something different with my photos and have just seen an advert for boomf, who print your photographs onto marshmallows. At £15 for a box of nine marshmallows I think it is a great idea for a promotional item or an unusual gift and may even get some done for Father’s day!

Screen Shot 2015-06-07 at 16.00.53 Screen Shot 2015-06-07 at 16.01.42

The only question is, are they too good to eat?

Exhibition Images Final Choices

After talking to my classmates I have decided that these will be the photographs that I will display in the end of year exhibition.

Photographs will be printed in either A0, A1 or A2 size onto 3mm foamboard or 5mm Foamex and adhered to the wall with velcro.

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