This is my self-evaluation against OCA quality criteria. The next tab is a copy of my tutor’s written feedback and my responses to it.
1. My evaluation against OCA Quality Criteria
1.1 Demonstration of technical and visual skills – Materials, techniques, observational skills, visual awareness, design and compositional skills.
The most important material in this assignment are the people. I have been skilled in the way in which I have negotiated entry to the group and in marketing my objectives. Three of the group members are going to meet with me in the next month so that I can continue to help them and me show their recovery story.
I have been attendant to the ethical and practical issues that a participatory and non- participatory project like this produces. Confidentiality and participation with choice of final images in the commissioned series remain tenants that I will keep.
Making notes of people’s comments has been very helpful in generating themes and ideas for the images.
Being in the groups was very limiting in terms of scene and opportunity to take photographs. I would have liked to have done more with service users outside the group which would produce more setting and perhaps new ideas about recovery.
1.2 Quality of outcome – Content, application of knowledge, presentation of work in a coherent manner, discernment, conceptualisation of thoughts, communication of ideas.
I think that the series works but I think it is quite short and ‘thin’ in content. I think only by spending more time with people in recovery, such as at their Halloween Party that I was invited to, could I generate more ideas and content. I would also choose other settings and images, not directly connected to my recovery contacts, to illustrate my ideas.
Presenting images and verbatim text together works well. It is often the text that answers the visual question of the image in my series.
1.3 Demonstration of creativity – Imagination, experimentation, invention.
I am at a crossroads in my photography as I am beginning to realise that literal images can limit or fails to communicate concepts and ideas and stimulate the viewer’s imagination. The more ambiguous the image the more the image is open to interpretation which can resonate with the viewer emotionally as well as intellectually. I blame my tutor for highlighting the issue of ‘poetic ambiguity.’
The images taken at the motorway service station are some of the best here because they are universal in their illustration of uncertainty and of the difficult journey illuminated with some light. I decided to remove most people from the images because they distract from ideas which are more fully explored in the text. The exception is the tattoo foot “Believe.”
1.4 Context – Reflection, research, critical thinking.
I am a qualitative researcher and reflector and this comes across in my appropriate use of research, reflection and thinking. There is always an ebb and flow to my work which I would describe as iterative and non linear in the planning, research, conduct and analysis. This results in some ‘dead ends’ but also ideas that carry through the project.
1.5 Possible future areas of work
I have a commission to help this substance misuse service to show their recovery and will meet this brief in the next six months. It will be interesting to compare this submission with my future final OCA exam submission, with more images to choose from, and with the images that the recovery group choose for an exhibition.
2.1 Link to Tutor’s feedback, my responses and changes made
That is on the next tab.