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Studying photography age 16-18

Discussion in 'Art and design' started by Kez101, Apr 12, 2011.

  1. When my daughter picked her options last year she chose a cross section of academic subjects (history, french, ICT) and Drama as a fun one. She has since discovered an aptitude for photography and wants to follow it as a future study.
    Because she didn't pick Art and Design GCSE, I assume she will be at a disadvantage when she comes to look at Photography at age 16-18. She also says some of her friends who go to a bigger school have Photography as an option at GCSE (which her small school doesn't).
    What is the advice for her now? She has some lovely pictures which she has had framed for home and I was wondering if she should be getting second copies and making some sort of collection to illustrate her ability and also dedication. Does anyone know what sort of hurdles she might meet and what things she should be doing now so she is prepared in year 11 when presumably they have to apply? bid? for 16-18 courses (she has no 6th form at her school, so will have to leave and there are about 8 choices of places to go)
  2. artcrisis

    artcrisis New commenter

    She should put together a portfolio of work. Another option is to have a photobook made up- thematically. These look so good. She should also become familiar with the time-line and history of photography, be able to appreciate the famous and not so famous photographers who have shaped the subject. I am in touch with several of my ex students who took Photography, without having a GCSE in it and some of whom didn't have any Art GCSE, and who have thrived on the creative challenge. Visit galleries as well. Look at contemporary artist photographers like Sam Taylor Wood, Fiona Crisp, Richard Billington, Martin Parr.
  3. Thank you very much.
  4. hi KEZ
    I agree with Artcrisis, try and get her to do those tasks! The photo book idea is a brill one!
    1. Colleges need to know that she absolutely loves photography and this is what she wants to study for 2 years! She needs to be prepared and equipped with a stunning portfolio! Be enthusiastic at the interview!
    2. Explain that she would have opted for GCSE Photo at her current school but it was not on offer!
    3. Buy A3 portfolio with plastic inserts, some have Black paper inserts but you may need to purchase sheets of black card. Ask the Art Dept in her school!
    4.Sort into themes as Artcrisis advised... show small originals and final outcomes, (how she has cropped or manipulated them)
    5 Turn some of her pics into book illustrations, magazine covers etc, packaging, show uses of photography,
    6. Include 'Close ups' of still life /objects/faces/people... anything
    7. Research some photographers, look at her Art friends work' ....see how they put together an artist sheet
    8.Only pick the very best photos, get others to choose best pics! include some Black & white too, sort this with your photo software! Include some trickery effects!
    9 SHOW VARIETY ..... Go and visit 6th form colleges etc who are opening their doors TOUTING for new students in Sept ...have a look at their displays of Photography ..... use their ideas to help put portfolio together!!!
    10. Go to her art dept in school and ask for help !!!
    11. Word process some labels & add to Themes.
    12. Can you visit a local Modern Photography studio? Beg a little work experience before your interview ....is it your Easter Holidays?
    Show that she has visited local Photographic Exhibitions, include the leaflet and insert in her portfolio.
    good luck!
    ps i have sent an email to you at TES with more info!

  5. Thanks, I will print off all this advice and email and show her. I'll help with a few £ for the materials and portfolio.
  6. Hi
    Looks like lots of good advice has been posted already but our A level photography website below might also be of use.

    There are also some links to some of our student blogs which can be an alternative to sketchbooks if printing costs are an issue.
    Other advice I would support is to prepare for the 'art-based' nature of the course. It can be a big jump from taking nice photos to developing more complex creative outcomes needed for success at A level.
    Two great books to help with this:
    The Photograph as Contemporary Art by Charlotte Cotton
    The Nature of Photographs by Stephen Shore

    They can be challenging for students - which is obviously a good thing too!
    Enthusiasm, persistence and creative curiosity / an open mind is what I look for when interviewing

  7. Thank you Chris.
  8. An update. We have found a USB stick at home and she is saving copies into folders of pictures she has taken and ones she has of others work which she just likes. Her best pictures she is putting in special folders.

    We have bought online a portfolio a3 and 10 plastic inserts with black paper. That should arrive in a week or so. She has six A5 pictures already printed off which we bought a few weeks ago. We had intended to frame those but because of the price she has decided to have the portfolio bought instead.

    She is going to speak to Art at school and ask if she can take all the above in for their help.

    She says thanks! So do I!

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