To see all research, exploration and development leading up to the final assignment one please see the separate Research, exploration and development page.
The reworked assignment as part of A6 can be found here.
Assignment One [Logic, Gates and Truth Tables]
Image 1 Rugby Triptych
Our school is a rather sporty school, particular with rugby. However, not all students can access sports and even those who can, do so with varying degrees of success. Physical disabilities and issues with team games/social issues/noise sensitivity etc impact on many levels. In order to illustrate this I chose to capture the same view of the rugby posts, shot through the fencing to show the physical barriers, but using different apertures, using the changes in the depth of field to illustrate the varying levels of difficulty faced.
Image 2 Locked Gate
Along similar lines to the first image I chose to include this in the set as it is not just rugby students struggle with, so this picture sums up the general issues around accessing field sports.
If you wish to discover more about the issues ASD students have accessing sport take a quick look here.
Image 3 Press Buzzer
The Press Buzzer for Reception sign is cropped to reveal the problems some have asking for help or even seeing that help is available, all they see is the big black barrier in their way to the place they need to be.
For hints on helping students with Asperger’s ask for help take a look here.
Image 4 IT3 Dyslexia Diptych
Dyslexia and Visual Stress are other very common problems experienced by many students, complaining that the letters move across the page or over lap each other. Occasionally this can be overcome by using coloured overlays and even obtaining tinted glasses.
Image 5 Cushion and foot rest
One of our students has significant health problems, which has resulted in impaired growth, he therefore requires these items to be able to sit comfortably and ergonomically at the school desks. He has a 1:1 learning support assistant who takes these from class to class whilst another student always very kindly offers to take his school books.
After a short spell in GOSH earlier this year the empty seat holds an extra poignancy for me that others looking may not experience.
Anyone wishing to support this brilliant hospital can do so here.
Image 6 Opening Doors
Another metaphorical image, using the darker foreground, brightly lit interior, with some of the blinds closed, to represent how in education we attempt to illuminate the way and open doors to success.
Pleased with the frames within frames, the geometric repeat patterns reveal little snippets of school life through the windows, the sixth form centre sign emphasises that students need support throughout their school career, and as I supervise directed study in there several times a week this is very pertinent to my role within the school.
Image 7 Extra Time Diptych
Several of our students have ‘special access arrangements and reasonable adjustments,’ and are allowed to use lap top computers for end of term assessments and exams. Most of these students are also allowed extra time and it is part of my responsibilities, as a learning support assistant, to ensure that the rules and regulations are adhered to during exam invigilation, as well as providing evidence throughout the year that this is the student’s ‘usual practice.’ Therefore I wanted to include some photographs that covered this aspect of their everyday school experience and my role within the department.
Access arrangements are strictly controlled by JCQ
Image 8 IEN Task Boxes
Something a lot of our IEN students struggle with is organisation, therefore we provide them with plastic boxes rather than lockers. They are then away from the general hubbub of the school when sorting their books and equipment, don’t have a locker key to lose and should they forget anything we can quickly run back to the office to collect it, whilst they remain in lessons. From an early stage students of all abilities get categorized and put into boxes and people don’t always see their individuality, especially with students with ASD who vary greatly, I don’t miss the irony that we literally put them into plastic boxes!
Other strategies for helping ASD students with organisation can be found here.
Image 9 Boxes Triptych
Taking the lids off of the IEN Task Boxes reveals three entirely different personalities… the black background isolates the subject matter revealing the segregation that students sometimes experience.
Image 10 – Ghost in the background
This covered walkway is between the IT rooms and the LRC ( Learning Resource Centre). Both buildings are integral to students’ learning and ability to access the national curriculum and I felt this summarised how I help the students bridge the gap when they struggle.
I have tried to be creative, as mentioned in my own personal aims, within the research and development page, but appreciate that creativity can always be pushed further and more risks can always be taken.
I have carried out thorough research with all the given exercises and even with my own quirky style of responses hope they demonstrate my developing intellectual understanding and self-awareness.
I am looking forward to receiving feedback, as positive or negative it is always useful to know if you are headed in the right direction and if not you need to be guided so that you are. It may mean I sit n sulk for a bit but will get over it! If you forced me I’d probably say that at this point I’m average on most things with the odd pop over into very good so C/B.
“The Photographic Brief” in Short,M. (2011) Creative photography context and narrative Lausanne:AVA Publishing, pp20-26
Response to tutor feedback
I had some initial feedback on tentative images for the set before final choices were selected and I submitted the final assignment idea for feedback.
The box idea works really well, the simplicity and identical (bar colour) of the container and the possibility of varying the contents is a strong visual metaphor. From a variation point of view; the gate(s) also, particularly the last image with the reception button. Also, I think the partly cropped images of text – although a more subtle approach – will work in the context of a set. The abstraction of chair legs,the signed letter have less impact for me, the former being too subtle perhaps, and the latter too obvious even though you make good use of field.
The idea of using a square format with oddly composed subject matter is a good idea for presentation especially the idea of the way society looks for uniformity.
While they all work as static images – still life in a sense – it might be worth exploring the idea of some peripheral activity/action to add an additional narrative dimension (as in the night shot) – I’m thinking of the fence triptych, chairs, gate.
In the feedback the main question raised by Russell was on the choice of presentation:
You explored some interesting methods of presentation, triptych, diptych, in addition to a single square format, all of which work, but perhaps, for better consistency, you might just choose one of those?
I explained in my response that I was attempting to show experimentation and exploration but agree that mixing so many ideas did’t make for visual coherency, so have decided to stick with single images.
Another good point was to consider the composition of one of my shots:
Cushion and foot rest’ also points out the postural problems some students may have and how special needs equipment can help, the separation between this chair and the others behind the desk creates a divide that many may not be conscious of. An angle from the end of the table emphasising this further would be an alternative composition – an ‘us and them’ point of view.
Unfortunately by the time I went to re-shoot this image the student concerned had already sat his final exam and taken his equipment home. I shall therefore reconsider its inclusion in the final set. I also had the added issue of changing my job and being unable to shoot some image to add in people for added dimension/action, although part of my idea was to show the issues rather than the students I can see the value of including something else to add to the narrative.
Taking on-board all of the advise /suggestions given I have decided to have single shots and swapped out some of the images selected. My final 10 are as follows:
The new images were the cropped text and the open book. Although I feel that the chair highlighted the physical problems experienced by some, I thought the composition could be improved, but was unable to re-shoot. The open exercise book helped the continuing narrative of struggling to write down and express ideas, whilst the blurry rugby posts remains a conceptual idea to illustrate the physical/emotional difficulties students have surrounding sport.
The cropped text is a communication aid – posts and help signs on the wall to help students communicate, one is a numbered list that they can indicate at what point they are ok, or stressed. This image was deliberately cropped with negative space in the centre to underscore the difficulties they may have with their social skills and how we try to close that gap.