Specialist masterclasses for BA (Hons) Digital Photography students are becoming a regular feature of the course calendar. Most recently we invited documentary photographer Ed Clark to lead one of these supported by Hasselblad UK and based at Calumet Photographic’s flagship London store.
Nicky West at Hasselblad generously provided four H5D camera systems with a selection of lenses to allow us to introduce the group to yet another medium format digital camera platform.
The students were set a brief written by Ed and Ravensbourne associate senior lecturer Julian Hawkins. Working in pairs they were asked to research and scout out a building within easy walking distance of Euston station. Once identified and selected it was the students responsibility to negotiate access and then photographically interpret the space, to endeavour to tell the story of a place that forms part of the built environment but where people do not necessarily feature although their presence is apparent.
Ed drew on his experiences of photographing in Guantanamo Bay and Bagram Air Base amongst other places, projects that lead to pieces such as his most recent work, The Mountains Of Majeed.
The participants responded enthusiastically to the challenge by doing three-week pre-production, then on the day quickly adapting to a medium format system they’d not used before. They were pushed to operate both conceptually and instinctually, and both Ed and Julian were impressed with the results.
Students from 1st year through to final year took part, so the masterclass encouraged cross-over and team building. This workshop also provided an opportunity to meet yet more working professionals as well as industry suppliers who go on to become the principal support that every freelancer depends upon.
Level 1: Vinny Stelzer, Genesis Cabrera Vallejo
Level 2: Tom Duke, Darren Osborne, Jess Kelly, Matt Stevens, Jack Williams
Level 3: Peter Marshall