January saw four industry photographers, Andy Earl, Jonathan Kitchen, Jasper White and Lottie Davies came down to review our works for two full days. Well, I called it a Masterclass workshop session, because for students to get advice from the industry professionals are a rare opportunity. Prior to the workshop, I had a hard time deciding what image to present because it I have exploring landscapes in many directions and it was extremely difficult to pick one image that represented me. Eventually, I pick the man on the millennium bridge, because of two factors: the vibrant and structural elements, and my technical expertise.
For the first day of the session, it was pretty much about an introductory session explaining to them about our photographic practices by showing the one strongest image of our works that best represents us. This not only gives them a better idea of our practices, but all the students also get to see each other’s works.
It was interesting to see the way they discussed our works, particularly when they disagree on certain details, and it just opens to use that that the is no one right rule, just different perspectives, and we had to take away what is best for us. Many of the students’ works had more critiques and areas of improvement. it felt normal that if they could not agree on one thing, it is normal.
For my works, strangely, they agreed that I had a strong sense of technical skills in my works, but they felt that the incorporation of the saturated blue hues in my image was questionable. They also agreed that I needed to reduce the saturation. so far no one who has seen the image has offered me advice on improvement. Even though I was taken aback by their critiques, this made me think about my technical control in colour and saturation in my future works.
For the second day of the workshop, the four photographers had come up with different areas of advice and we could go to each of them. I went to see Jonathan Kitchen and Jasper White. Though we wished for more time, there wasn’t enough time to see all of the photographers.
I greatly admire Jonathan Kitchens’ works I though his work practice closely resembles mine: I am technically skilled in many areas, I like to have as much control, and very particular about details, and somewhat money-minded (do whatever to bring money to the table, etc). This mentality is what is needed to survive in a small market industry in Singapore.
I felt the first-day session was a bit dry as all we did was to go through each and everyone’s works, and see the four photographers debate. There were 50 over students works. The only thing about it was that I was told only to print one image, but some students printed three or more. I find the second day to be much more interesting as we get to asked them about industry-related questions.
At the end of it, I had all of the participants to stay back for a quick group shot to end the day. Overall it was still a good session.