Learning from my first assignment

I have been taking photographs for a number of years, and already I see there is a steep learning curve ahead of me to incorporate a more imaginative and creative aspect to my work.  Already, I have learnt from my tutor the importance of selecting photographs which will create a series, and linking all the photographs together with a common theme. In the first assignment, the Square Mile, I took two separate series of photographs of the area with the aim of showing the juxtaposition of the old and new.  However, my tutor saw beyond that and pointed out a common theme between the two sets of photographs: constraint and suggested I look into the work of Fay Godwin, Trevor Paglen and John Kippen.

I was fascinated by the work of Fay Godwin, as she had great influence in opening up private land for walkers.  I watched an interview on You Tube: Mavis Nicholson interviews Fay Godwin on the ‘In with Mavis’ program in1991 in which she said she loved the landscape and taking pictures, but was aware that we are ruining it by polution and littering.  Although this interview took place in 1991 it could be the same now.  The landscape is beautiful, but we are polluting it.  Her words were timeless.  She was heavily involved with the Ramblers Association and help open up many footpaths for others enjoy.

Trevor Paglan, on the other hand, explores infrastructure, internet, surveillance and “secret” places.  This fitted with my photographs of the earth satellite station in the Square Mile assignment.

I now realise I created a set of photographs which brought Fay Godwin and Trevor Paglan together through a common aim: highlighting issues around restrictions of access, secrecy and surveillance.




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