Dear Past Self,
I’m glad you’ve listed what you wanted me to achieve because its set me goals. But, I’m if I’m honest, I’ve stayed truer to myself than I was before. I felt there was a lot of rules and regulations that I thought would help in college, but they aren’t needed here. Its a relaxed environment that gets the best creativity out of me. I have worked hard to develop my own style but I don’t think I’ve necessarily found it yet. I’ve experimented with different styles to try and find my niche in photography, but I’ve just been influenced by the mass of photographers at our fingertips, so that my style changes after I’ve done a research session. You will be pleased to hear that I have tested my comfort zone. I’ve taken my street photography to a brave new level, coming closer to people, putting myself in danger to get that image. I’ve also walked into farm-shops without invite to find the owners to photograph them and interview them, something I definitely wouldn’t have done before. I’ve just been compelled to photograph because of my passion for the projects I’ve assigned myself. With portrait photography I’ve definitely improved after having studio workshops. I’ve been to the studio out of hours to make sure I understand how to use the equipment; this helped me with a project centred around the representation of self-portraiture. You’ll be glad that I’m putting this effort in, but I still need to use the energy of what I haven’t done and excel next year because I know its need because of the amount of work.
Research a lot of photobooks? I think a lot is an understatement. I’ve bought three books that are worth over £30, and viewed many more in libraries, shops and videos on photobookstore.co.uk. Its fair to say that I’ve found a new productive hobby of flicking through photobooks and finding images and artists to reference in my own work. I’m not that guy who’s in the library all the time because I spend my work time at home or in the photography building, because I need my own space that I’m comfortable with to research in. It is crazy to think that I’ve written over 57,000 words on my blog, but it makes sense considering its me, so I hope that counts as putting my head down and doing work.
I’ve actually had the best time of my life at this first year of uni. Being brought up in a market town I’ve always wanted to live in a city and be independent. Living that dream felt and feels so good, especially when I’ve got the best friends I could have wished for from the course and from outside the course. Even though I’ve had this experience with them, I’ve balanced it well with university work. I’ve even had the opportunity to take photographs as a job, photographing Barry McGuigan, album shoots and school evenings. Its so good to think about everything that I’ve achieved in my work and in my personality. I’ve had the opportunity to shoot video in my university assignments as well as paid jobs and personal projects; so I’m proud that I’ve found time for video as well, don’t worry.
Considering there was a problem with my university laptop and I’ve been unable to use it for half the year (because the company doesn’t seem to want to pick it up after arranging it seemingly hundreds of times). I’ve adapted myself well to working back home and on university computers to get my work done on time, even though its a lot harder than before christmas, I’ve still got the marks that I’m proud of. I hope the next time I’m writing to myself (if there is one) that I’ll have my precious laptop back and I’ll be typing away on that, but academia would have to get their skates on for that to happen. But other than that I’ve been happy as larry to be on this excellent course with these excellent people, I really don’t know what you were worrying about, its been the best.