Magnum – Portfolio Review

The timing of the Magnum event meant I decided to take a very limited set of images for the portfolio review. My intention for the review was very focused really looking for only two pieces of feedback rather than broad feedback that I had sort during earlier stages of the development of the project.

The first piece of feedback was from Harry on the transformation of the project from an exhibition outcome into a book-based outcome. He reviewed the images and made a number of suggestions on how the book could be constructed. Reviewing the images he felt that the image of the boat moored at Two Tree Island could act as a focal point for the narrative. The boat either represents a single person or the United Kingdom as a collective unit. He then suggested that the boat could be cut out and placed as the sole object on the page. They suggested that repeating the same images over multiple pages could encourage an interesting discourse between the reader and the book.

Author, 2018, Isolated Boat

I explained about the use of diary entries on the wall text to tell the narrative which he felt was a clever method for articulating the narrative.

His final comment for the creation of a book was to push the design concepts to the extreme, otherwise, the book would end up looking like any other photobook. Pushing design to the extreme would allow me to explore different possibilities as he felt as you explored this bigger envelope eventually through evolution you land on a layout the as a designer you feel amplifies the body of work into something that is greater than the original component parts. This provides me with an avenue for exploration to create a book dummy that could then be entered into book dummy competitions over the next 12 to 18 as the subject material is going to remain relevant in the short to medium term.

The second for portfolio review was with Fiona Rogers, I showed the same set of images. In this particular review, the feedback from Fiona was that some of the images included did not support the narrative and she felt that those images looked like strong commercial images rather than fine art images. Once those images were removed from the selection she then felt the narrative was evident in the work. This feedback acted as validation that during the selection process I had made the decisions for the overall project rather than purely based on the strength of individual images. For me, this was further confirmation that a photographer I have developed away from the creation of single images towards being able to express a narrative across a series something that I felt was important in my development during the MA.

Author, 2018, Magnum Portfolio Review Selection 1
Author, 2018, Magnum Portfolio Review Selection 2


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