Hello World.

SelfiMy name is Ian, I’m from Leicester and am a new student on the OCA’s Art of Photography course. This blog will be my on-line learning log to share with my tutor, fellow students and anyone else that might be remotely interested. So far, I’ve paid, logged-in to the OCA’s website and emailed my tutor.

I’ve been taking pictures for a few years and have made the usual progression through film and digital, shooting a couple of weddings, selling the odd print. I have enjoyed the learning process so far, a process that I feel has gathered pace in the last 12 months or so.

Photography used to be something I did while out doing something else (riding bikes, paddling kayaks or walking), but now photography is the reason for going in the first place.

As with many self-taught photographers, it feels like I can now take half-decent pictures that will gather ‘likes’, ‘shares’ and ‘favourites’ on social media, but they aren’t really telling a story. They are usually gimmicky rather than art and pretty throw-away.

I am hoping that the course will give me structure to this learning and allow me create work that people will want to come back to. I hope it will give me the skills and knowledge to articulate what I like about other photographers’ work, to respond to critique and allow me to take pictures that I can be satisfied with. I hope that it will continue to fuel my enthusiasm for the discipline and above all be fun.

I would like to see the course through to degree level, but the learning is more important to me that the qualification – I have no plans to change career.

You can see my Flickr stream here. It includes these pictures that I took at Taylor’s Bell Foundry in Loughborough. They were included in a show by four of us from the Leicester Lo-Fi Photography Group that was part of the Format Festival and has since been shown as part of Handmade Festival in Leicester and at the Charnwood Museum.

I’ve also been part of a couple of exhibitions with local groups and had pictures selected for the Sandergram exhibition (and subsequently invited into the Leicester Arts & Museum’s Permanent Collection).

I use Canon gear mostly but also have a Fuji x100 which I am enjoying for its portability. I also have a couple of pinholes (one made from a shoebox containing a grid of 42 pinholes) and various film cameras, including a Bronica and a medium format Fuji rangefinder that I’d marry given the chance.


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