Assignment 5: Personal Project – Feedback

I have just received and digested my feedback for the final assignment of the Digital Photographic Practise course and I feel relatively pleased. The overall consensus is of a strong understanding both technically and artistically so I’m very happy. There were of course elements of improvement and I look forward to further developing on those throughout the course as I progress.

“It is clear that you are a very capable and engaged photographer.  Your work is shown a good awareness of both technical and artistic understanding.”

These two sentences from the overall comments section have stood out to me, I am very happy indeed with their sentiments and hope to continue from this course in the manner I have undertaken it. The overall feedback is very accurate to my understandings of the images although the idea of using a key line on the images, especially those with white backgrounds is a good idea and something I will look at in this feedback.

It was mentioned in the feedback that although a successful assignment with a commercial slant I should still consider the art element as this is an art degree. Although aware of this element I completely understand the premise of it and will, as recommended in the feedback consider this further into degree program.

An element that I have considered from this feedback that would have been a good addition throughout the course would have been a more insightful depth to my editing process, not just my workflow but the image manipulation element itself, looking at the RAW image and how it becomes the finished article. I think this depth into the editing process in my non academic mind may have spoilt the end result somewhat but from a assessment point of view this information would have been further insight to my development.

For the first image of the assignment I have been recommended to look at a key line for the image to help define the edges due to the white background giving the image a floating feel on the page. I have looked into this as shown below and feel they give a very strong and effective border that cements the images positioning on the frame.

I can certainly see the advantage of it when showing white backgrounded images on a white page, the definite border completes the final image, however in this case the photo is not helped by the tightness of the composition.

The second image depicting the knife is complimented on a good reflection, I felt this was integral to the image when working on the composition which is why I photographed from that angle. It was also noted that the green on the foreground lifts the frame.

The third image was credited for a well controlled exposure and timing that captured the flames well, I would certainly agree with this, I feel the positioning is what ensures this images use for packaging.

The fourth image is acknowledged for appearing more professional and polished while the black background is well suited. It is recommended that I look at the lighting set up within the assignment and how I set it up so I will do this in the assignment post.

The fifth image and first of the laptop is again used with a white backdrop and again is recommend that a fine key line could help the frame so I will look at that again below. It is noticed the blur on the hands work well however a slight adjust meant to the angle of the screen could improve as it appears to be an unnatural angle.

As you can see in the images above I have adjusted the angle of the laptop screen and I feel it gives it a more natural and effective position that also displays the text effectively. I have also added a key line as recommended and similarly to the first image the tightness of the frame effects the balance of the image with the border but I also see its advantages again, I would there for when working with a white background in a similar scenario consider my composition to ensure the use of a key line, if appropriate, suited the image.

It was noted for the second image of the laptop that I have used a good visual tool that grabs the attention front he subject however the cluttered desk, an element I chose to have because I felt would give more detail and interest on the images within the image has come across as cluttered, I completely understand and agree with this point and feel that my idea could have been toned back a touch to in a ‘less is more’ sense. The green folder in the background was noted as taking the eye of the viewer, as seen below I have  darkened this area on each layer of the image.


I think this adjustment has certainly improved the image with out bringing the overall tone down and now the focus is certainly drawn into the images strong visual element.

The next image was commented as being a very traditional still life image, something that I mentioned during the assignment. I completely agree to this and perhaps of the assignment it is the only one lacking in an interesting and innovative visual element but I have shown a variety through a mixture of styles. However an interesting alternative could have been a still life image taken within a corn field, this would have added an interesting connection not to mention textures and interest throughout the image.

This next image was a highly thought out and considered still life that took a number of shots and image manipulation time. With a good technical consideration the image could have further been improved by using a less obvious background, something that gives a softer and less defined feel. I had chosen the tiles as they were available to me at the time and I wanted a coloured background to further define the stream of milk as opposed to a white background. This has however effected the other elements of the image into receding into the busy tiles. I could have improved upon this by using a shallower depth of field to blur the them or finding something more appropriate. It was suggested in the feedback and its something I’m slowly starting to build is a collection of materials and potential backdrops to give me a multitude of options with still life photography.

The continued use of the tiles in this image do not work when viewing the assignment collectively, individually however I do feel the image is successful with the use of the tiles although the darker tones behind the subjects should be replaced with lighter variations.

The use of the bubbles in this frame was commended as setting off the product while the angle of view is causing the bottle to loom out. I was aware that the angle I felt best suited the use of the bubbles would effect the vertical lines of the bottle but found that the positioning and outcome of this image to give the bottle more impact than show a distortion.

The penultimate image was considered well captured and was noted that the set up would have been interesting to see. similarly to the previous white back ground images this and the last image both have the same issues that I completely understand and agree with although I’m unsure how adding a key line to these photos would show them against they others within the assignment, my understanding being that it is perhaps best to have all or none to ensure a consistency.

The final image is considered a good contemporary concept however the composition has an awkward feeling. I can understand once looking at the image again this point the bottle and the chip, although both shot within a single frame look detached and unbalanced however the ketchup bottle as the focal point does grab the attention first and the image then gives the product further interest and context.

Overall I feel the feedback to be extremely fair and truthful as it has been throughout the course. I have felt and seen my development both technically and artistically improve as the assignments have progressed and have enjoyed the course as a whole. This assignment alone has left me questioning my work further than I had been previously which is one of the bigger ways I have noticed my development. The effect of which has further spurned my photography and photographers mindset on throughout the course and onto my second year.

Please find below a link to the feedback from my tutor.

OCA Payne 1DPP05 27 May 2014


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