Final evaluation

As I am continuing this course from last year I have been updating my  pages and trying to do further research.

Basically this year I feel I have done, it  has been less stressful on me due to having an enabler now who helps me to understand more about what lecture is teaching me. I like the fact that I got to see Tony Cobley’s work again as I have always enjoyed his work and I learnt some extra stuff from last year.

A couple of my posts on my blog are from last year but have all been updated and reflected on, I have also added a lot of new work including another interview and paid work so I could do better this year. I do think I have a better understanding now about how to get ready to go out there on my own, for instance I know for a fact I would love to go into teaching photography as it has been such a struggle for me and I would hate to see it go to waste at the end of my degree, and not carry on to teach other’s the skills I have learned at PCA. I also want to go into documentary photography and I have projects in my mind lined up already!

I also looked more into Linkedin and at the AOP BOOK so I have been able to update my professional practise with more understanding and managed to think of a path to go dow, teaching. The areas I feel I have developed since last year has to be just getting a better understanding of it all, I now know this professional practise module is to kick start myself into getting out there in the photography world.

Speaking to Stephanie in my interview helped me a lot too as I wanted to go down her path of documentary if i don’t go into teaching. Her route is down the documentary route and she is just snapping constantly, I recently tested myself when a car crash happened outside my house, 2 cars where involved and 1 car flipped completely upside down, luckily the 2 people in there vehicles survived. What I mean by testing myself is getting out there in the moment and just shooting away. I literally ran out as heard the bang took my nikon and started taking documentary snaps of the action.10999067_741916125923761_1726099469_o 11001954_741916025923771_479663564_o 11017317_741916065923767_826200835_o 11023018_741916062590434_1754151963_n

This to me is definitely a challenge because in the documentary world I would have to get up close and personal to stuff like this. It was such a buzz trying to hide away from police and things while trying to get my shots!

I really enjoyed the lecture that included Tim Walker’s work, he is very inspiring, especially his series of plane crashes in different set ups on his shoots. I also really enjoyed the lecture we did on interviewing as I felt it was a good way to get ourselves prepared for our actual interview, I dint think I would enjoy it but I did. I also especially enjoyed chatting to Stephanie Roberts about her work, I was so nervous being on Skype and I think I would prefer a face to face interview next time but she was in America so it was all I could do.

I like that my CV and artist statement is practically ready to hand out to anyone as they have been checked over and look presentable, I’m really pleased with them. I enjoyed the lecture with Russell Soper who came in and spoke to us about his work, it also helped me on an idea to get out there and run classes in photography. I started to picture myself helping young kids with photography and helping them in the way tutors helped me.

My work experience was also achieved in this module as I got into a paid work job for a wedding, I charged the lady £100 for this as I am only a beginner, to me that was challenging but still achievable, so all in all I feel i have achieved so much more then I did last year. I don’t feel quite ready ready to just go out there on my own but I am definately getting more confident in and out of my work and getting more positive about my work also which I no something I found difficult last year with. I will continue from here on out to get as many shoots in as possible and start looking at teaching routes or documentary photography routes.


Documentary photography

Cindy Crewford



Cindy has released photos of herself without any photoshop work done –


cindy-crawford-02 cindy-crawford


i think this is brilliant perfect example of somebody letting themselves out to the public like this Cindy has amazed me by what she has done hopefully it will teach other’s to photoshop less.


what is documentary? i think it is a story tells a story. and image could have a story behind it. or it’s something in the moment. event happening there and then.

there are so many views on this, it would be worth listening to my own.


John Grierson


John coined the term ‘ documentary in 1926. it was to describe the type of cinema he wanted to make to replace the ‘ dream factory’ of cinema

i think it does help a way for pave a way for change yes i do.




Paid Work Experience

Wedding photography.

I chose to do my photography work experience on wedding photography and was able to secure a booking for 31/01/2015.

At first I felt it was going to be challenging and I was right!

I started at 6:30am and took my last photo at 8.00pm that day! I was working closely all day with the bride, groom and family members.

Before the day I sat and made an action plan to take with me.

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Action Plan

Evaluation: I found wedding photography so stressful, I don’t think i could ever do it again because it was manic from the word go.

Apart from the chaos I was chuffed with what I came out with and really pleased that I did in fact manage to pull off a wedding shoot, although it was my first one

To me I think I did a good job on the day. As this was only work experience I got paid £100 for the day. I was also the wedding singer too.

At times it did get a bit stressful because I had to keep changing the lens so in the end I just stuck with my wide angle lens and started shooting everything.

It was also a challenge to me as they were a big family so it was hard getting their attention or my point across when describing what iI wanted in a photo. Sometimes the bride wouldn’t listen so to get these great shots I needed or  wanted I needed for them to listen to me, I was a bit nervous and found it challenging to be quite bossy with them. Also it was bad enough that I had to ask the bride twice for payment :/ this again was a challenge to me.

Now i have had this experience I think I definitely won’t be doing weddings again but have taken on board how fast I had to work and how challenging it was for me. I managed to power through it still especially having arthiritus and having to sing.

If I reflect on the day now I should be very proud of myself for this being my first time and I still managed to get some good shots!

Here are a few of my favourite edited pics:


Happy Couple


Having fun getting ready!


All the boys!


Bride and Groom


With the hairdresser


The excited bride



                                                          window view       DSC_0822

love for the bride DSC_0557 DSC_0452 DSC_0617 DSC_0530DSC_0527

My Interview With Stephanie Calabrese



Hello Stephanie!

Hello how are you?

I’m good thanks, how are you?

I’m perfect, thank you!

Good, thank you for taking the time out for me. Okay I have some questions for you…


So, I have read a lot about you, and your work and how you got started, what I really want to know is what led you into documentary photography?

Um, sure well gosh I guess it really all started when I was a kid, maybe around age 12 I got a little Kodak camera in my stocking at Christmas and I would take this camera and follow all of my friends, I would take it into school and be there when all the kids would have recess and playing games and kick ball and I would prefer to stand back a little bit and just watch everyone and how they moved and I would make pictures of them with my little camera, and that was back when it was just film photography and I would have to mail in the film and wait usually 2 weeks for the pictures to come back. So I guess as a kid I have always loved watching people and how they moved and shooting them in very candid ways. Then it really came back for me again professionally as an adult, I guess I would say I always made pictures but in terms of documenting people and doing what they do it really came back to me around 2008, I did a project called Project 365, where I carried a camera with me every day for a year..

Thats what I really need to do!

Ha ha, I carried my big SLR in a backpack and I tended to see the images I loved the most were of people so I noticed once that project was over that what I really needed to focus on was documentary photography, I guess thats the bulk of it.

Awesome thats great, so what camera is the best for your work?

Well I use 2 cameras, I have a Nikon D3, which is a big SLR with a nice collection of lenses, I use that camera primarily for my professional shooting, its really heavy and my lenses are a 14-24 lense, a 6-15mm 1.4 lens which I love, and then I shoot with a 24-70 which is a really nice lens too. So I use that mainly for my professional work but because that camera is so big and bulky its tough to shoot with that because I like to shoot everyday as i’m moving through life  so for those images my Iphone 5S.

Oh cool, yeah I use a samsung S5 and thats a really good camera but I’ve just bought a Nikon at the moment so I’m starting small. Do you use flash for your work as well?

Uh yes I do, I have a speed light that I use and if I’m shooting video I use a nice portable LED light that I mainly use especially if I’m using the iphone for interiors or that sort of scenario.

Oh okay, that good. Do you not get scared taking all your equipment out with you when you are out and about?

Ha ha ha, no! You know what I don’t worry about that!

Ha ha. Really?

Yeah maybe because I’m just a really trusting person in general.

I think I would be scared of someone grabbing it off me. How could you cope with that?

God I don’t know, I think I would have to try and persuade them and say I am on a mission to document the world and how dare you!

It looks very daunting the stuff that you do! Do you ever go out and shoot alone?

You know I think before I go into a shoot anywhere there is a little anxiousness, I hate to call it fear but a sense of when you go on an assignment you never know what you are going to see and often I’m going to a place I’ve never been.  There’s a lot of excitement in that and I love seeing something new and dropping in on that. Theres a thrill in that but theres always anxiety because I genuinely want people to feel comfortable in my presence and I want them to accept me on an equal level to them, I don’t want to be seen as a photographer or as someone seperate, I just want sport of blend into their life and what they are doing and so I guess if anything I fear myself not being able to do that for whatever reason. I think if I travel internationally or to a developing place i’ve never been before I always have someone with me, so I never travel to those places alone. But throughout the United States and all of my corporate assignments I am often alone, but I always have one person that’s local to the area that I am photographing to be my guide, and that part is critical for the access and for knowledge about the scenario.

Thats good! Do you pay for these trips or have you managed to get funding?

Well, for the initial travel, like the travel when I was shooting in Rwanda and Nepal and Tanzania I actually won, with a friend of mine, a competition called ‘Name your Dream assignment” and it was an awesome project and was sponsored by Microsoft and Lenovo so we won $50’000, and that was, well, wow that was quite a gift! and that funded the initial trips, yeah that was huge and I would not have had the funds to have paid for that on my own, I was just getting started doing photography professionally full time and that was challenging, as a freelance photographer has so many ups and downs and the grant was such a gift. So typically when I go somewhere I do have funding from a client and that helps!

So would you advise me to get into competitions?

Yeah absolutely! Its hard to put yourself out there but anytime you want something so much and don’t get it its demoralising, and its hard because your photography and your art is so personal but yes i would encourage you to do it anyway and realise that when its meant to work out it will! I think self funding as much as you can is smart and in the early days even if you are paying your own way on an assignment and lets say you’re working for a non profit and they can’t afford to pay you, do that because that exposure and that practice is great! By all means go for any opportunity you can to get funding for that work.

Cool thank you. What is your favourite thing to document?

Gosh thats so hard to say!

Yeah because you are awesome at everything!

Why thank you! Gosh I love photographing people, I love people in general. I love learning about people and getting to know them and seeing where they live and I try to translate that into any assignment like the Picture Hope . But I also love my corporate documentary work too, so I try to get any sort of work that gets me close to people and allows me to penetrate their lives, I love that the most.

Good, you have loads of work published but what would you say is the piece you are most proud of.

I don’t know, I think at the moment the Ted talks, have you heard of them?

No, what are TED talks?

Well, Ted is an acronym, it stands for Technology, Education and Design and its a series of educational, inspirational talks.

About Stephanie Calabrese Roberts 

Documentary Photographer | Author | Mentor


Stephanie ‘Documenting your world through photography’.

Stephanie is an award winning documentary photographer.

Stephanie’s clients span corporate and non-profit organizations, publishers, entrepreneurs and individuals. Her work has been featured in influential publications including,, Digital photo magazine, Shutter, digital photo magazine Shuttering, shutterbug magazine, and the ASMP (American Society of Media Photographers) Bulletin; she has also exhibited at numerous galleries including: PhotoFest Gallery in Houston; the Atlanta Photography Gallery, Matre Gallery, National Center for Civil and Human Rights Groundbreaking Ceremony at the Georgia Aquarium, and “Through the Eyes of a Girl” Exhibit in collaboration with CARE at Mason Murer Fine Art Gallery in Atlanta; and Odapark Art Center in Venlo, Holland.

In Spring 2009, Stephanie won the “name your dream assignment” global photography competition sponsored by Lenovo and Microsoft. This award sent Stephanie and her “picture hope” project partner, Jen Lemen, on a journey to remote regions of Rwanda, Tanzania and Nepal to capture and share images and stories of hope from courageous changemakers and wise individuals including genocide survivors, refugees and the poorest of the poor.  In 2010 she was honored as a ‘BlogHer Voice of the Year’ for her  picture hope project. Stephanie was awarded two Honorable Mentions in the 2013 mobile photography awards 

Stephanie is the best-selling author of The art of iphoneography: a guide to mobile creativity Second Edition published December 2012 and the First Edition published April 2011 by Pixiq, an imprint of Sterling Publishing, in the US and Canada, and by Ilex Press in the UK. The book has sold more than 100,000 copies and is available around the world in ten languages.

She is the author of Lens on life: documenting your world through photography published July 2012 by Focal Press in the US and Canada, and by Ilex Press in the UK. The book is available in English, French, Italian and (soon) Chinese. She is a co-author of expressive photography: a shutter sisters guide to shooting from the heart published in 2010 by Focal Press in the US and Canada, Ilex Press in the UK, and around the world. Stephanie is a contributor to Kirsty takes a bow an artful collection of inspirations from more than 100 social media leaders, entrepreneurs and artists published by Bright Sky Press in 2009.

Stephanie’s background

Stephanie has been an artist all her life. She studied and practiced drawing, painting, photography and non-fiction storytelling throughout her education, and graduated from the University of Georgia with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Studies. Throughout her career in digital media communications, Stephanie lead initiatives ranging from interactive user experience design, marketing and corporate communications strategy, and creative content development for global corporations and non-profit organizations. Since 2008, she’s been pursuing her passion for documentary photography and storytelling, and mentoring photographers and photo enthusiasts of all ages around the world.


Stephanie has lead numerous documentary and mobile photography one-day and multi-day workshops for creative communicators and photography enthusiasts of all ages. She writes a monthly “Art of iPhoneography” column for digital photo magazine photo  and has written numerous instructional articles on documentary and mobile photography for this and other publications including Shutter Sisters, and iPad/tablet interactive magazine photographers i published by Ilex Press. Stephanie has been a featured speaker on the topic of iPhoneography at the annual MacWorld / iWorld conference in San Francisco in January 2013 and 2012, at the 2012 BlogHer Annual Conference in New York City, and at the Shutter Sisters Oasis Second Annual Retreat in Palm Springs, CA in October 2012, and routinely teaches iPhoneography classes at The Showcase School of Photography in Atlanta, Georgia.

Inspired by her picture hope project subjects, Stephanie founded lens on life, inc. in January 2011, a non-profit organization that inspires, cultivates, and promotes a visual voice for children and young adults living in challenged conditions around the world. The organization seeks to inspire interest and develop skills in documentary photography as a form of creative expression and storytelling. She has lead photography workshops for children in partnership with Koseli School  in Kathmandu, Nepal, and with Atlana metro boys and girls clubs in Georgia. Her Atlanta students’ images were featured in the New York Times LENS “my hometown”  collaborative documentary photography project for teens nationwide in September 2013.

I love her work, I think its amazing how she captures the inside story of a photo just like something I want to do.

I am going to buy this book to help me.

I00006rG88cxsOX0 download

Lens-on-Life-624x676 (1)

Making a photo look interesting Stephanie talks about seeing, as she inspires me I have decided to try and interview her. I have written her an email asking to interview her, if she agreed it would be over skype due to her living in America, but if she goes through the interview for me I would be incredibly happy as I have followed her work for many years.

this is copy of the email

23 Oct (4 days ago)

to me

Hi Stevie Jay,

So kind of you share those words. Yes, I’d be happy to talk with you via Skype to support our project. I can make time next week. Waiting to schedule a shoot on Tues. or Thurs., but after I get that confirmed, we can schedule it on one of those days if that works for you. I’m on eastern standard time. 
I had to chase her a little bit but I think it paid off!
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Russell Soper – Soperfect images and camera kids


Russell started in 2006 and was helped Plymouth City Council commissioned him in 2008 to take photos of plymouth events- these were often used on PCC promotional work. Russell argeed to take on work for a football tournament even though he had never done this before – through he managed to secure more work. He says it reminded him that you never know who is watching you whilst you took photographs. Again this led to more work and his portfolio has  more work and has become very diverse just because he agreed to work and kept open minded about what work he took on.

He has faced a huge learning curve, especially with diving shots but because he has kept on his toes and made sure he has responded to the customers needs.

He also does voluntary work for Megaride, his business had to diversify so quickly that he started to go into schools and taking class photos. Once there he noticed a number of children were interested in the photography itself so after meeting with the head teacher workshops were made up.

Russell says “I enjoy the work because the kids all see something different” they start to look at everyday objects in a different way.

The children have created a book and their confidence has really improved. Russell enjoys photography landscapes and he makes his money from everything else.


With his ‘Camera Kids’


Teaching technical skills


Promoting his work

Above are a few pictures of Russell Soper working with his workshops.

Artist statement

What is a artist statement??


I have followed up with my own research into this and has come up with this…..

An artist statement is something of a general introduction to my work as an artist. It is how, why and what my own work from my own perspective is. It helps me to convey the deeper meaning or purpose of my work to the audience such as clients and gallery owners.

Photographers, designers, fashion designers, painters, sculptors and so on, all need artist statements.

Q – Why do we need an artist statement!

I need one as I am a photographer and I’m working my way up the ladder to be a professional. A well written statement shows the relationship between me and my photography and helps to create a connection with the viewer that will make my work and my name more memorable,

And artist statement can

  • clarify my own ideas about my work.
  • describe my work in my own words
  • be a basis for a proposal for an exhibition or project
  • fill a requirement for scholarships grants funding and teaching positions or admission for schools
  • be a good source of info for art reviewers journalists reporters etc.
  • introduce my work to the buying public.

“writing an artist statement is a chore for most artists”

Screen Shot

My Artist Statement.

This is a copy of my artist statement, I think it is a good description of me now and is not too long or too short.