Tag: ICP

1st Week!

What a week its been! Everything has built up to the first classes of the Fall term (or the Autumn Term for those back home in UK).

I’ve figured that as well as doing the monthly blogs, I might do a weekly blog as well detailing everything I have gotten up to the week in a more condensed form, leaving my vlogs to me a more overview sight of the month!

So here goes…


Monday:

So the first class to begin the term off was my Photography, Art, and the Media: The 19th Century.  To start off the class, we decided to watch two film to make us think about the age old question: What is Photography? The films to help the grey brain cells were:

  • Ulysses: Based on a picture that was somewhat spontaneous, the director looked at how the memory affected those that were part of the original photo and how much they could remember of it, whilst also looking at the other historical events that were happening at the same time.
  • Nostalgia: Looking at the pictures taken back by Hollis Frampton, we are taken down a journey with personal comments made on each individual picture whilst they are being burnt; however there is a slight twist to it (watch the film to find out!)

Both of these films were a great start in getting the whole group to think not critically, but offer a variety opinions not only on the film but towards the question “What is Photography?”


Tuesday:

Oh yes. The class I was pumped for. This was the beginning of the Colour Printing class, taught by Darin Mickey (have a look at his work if you can!) I was quite excited for this class as it was going to push me into a new limit of analogue I have always wanted to try. Shooting in colour isn’t the hardest, but being able to go into a fully functioning colour lab? It was an opportunity I couldn’t pass down.

And although we didn’t go straight into printing this week, we are given quite a few tips. For example, with negative printing (this would be colour and Black+White shooting) you want to over pose the prints more as it allows it to be dealt easier in printing.

This can be done by either going up an aperture or shutter stop. However, an easier way is that if you are using a light meter, by changing the ISO settings on it, it will automatically give you that 1 stop change.

E.g.

A 400 ISO —> Shoot at “200 ISO”

So now its onto shooting more rolls of film in order to start printing!

In the afternoon, we had our first Seminar class. As we were in smaller groups, it was an opportunity to get to know each other a bit better, with everyone talking about their interests, their aspirations etc. It was interesting to hear what everyone had to say, giving a deeper insight into them all. Afterwards, we started looking through each others work, but in a different critique method: instead of explaining their work, we as the viewers had to decipher the work with no help and make our own interpretations on it, providing interesting responses.


Wednesday:

This was the first lecture with the Dean of the School, Fred Ritchin. This was possibly the one class I had no idea of what to expect, apart from that I was prepared for a lot of information to be heading my way.

And I was right! In three hours, which seemed to fly by so quickly, we had covered so much material my brain was hurting. The conversation started talking off about hyper text (non linear narrative) and how it can begin a collaboration with the reader, something which the digital is good at doing. This then led on to a conversation about digital and analogue and the restrictions between the two and how a multitude of ideas can be implemented differently.

We was introduced to a site Fred used to run called pixelpress.org which should the capabilities of the digital in which analogue could not do, and in how text can provide a different meaning to the image as well. Do have a look at the website, as it will definitely start making you think about how important text is…


Thursday:

This was the start of my video class. I know I have already done video in the past, however I personally del that there was much more that I could lear from this, especially in terms of editing the video to an acceptable standard.

So we was introduced to some of the tools in order to give more steady shots (fluid tripods, shoulder rigs) as well as some of the better external microphones that we had on offer for us to use. And it was drilled in that with DSLR’s, the internal microphone is rubbish, so using an external microphone is always the route you want to head along.

We was also given our assignment for the week which was to shoot a video on out daily routine, and we was advised to follow the 5 second rule (don’t remain on a frame for more then 5 seconds.) To help us understand this more, we was shown then short film The Big Shave by Sorcasse (again something I would highly recommend but be warned, very graphic!)  to show us how we could shoot a similar video.


Friday:

The class where I was different whoop!

So this was the first class for Future Storytelling and the main thing was that stories can be told however we want them to, whether it be via Transmedia (art of telling one story over multiple media where each is unique) and Multimedia (different forms of media to create powerful stories that can communicate.)

However to make a more powerful story sometimes, it is best to get the obvious out of the way in order to surprise both the audience and you, with surprise being a way for the brain to release dopamine to the body.

We was also introduced to the different types of User experiences out there:

  • Visceral design
  • Behavioural design
  • Reflective design

And finally, to finish off the week, we had our Digital technical seminar to round off the afternoon. This was just a quick introduction and recap over Colour theory and how the Primary and Complimentary colours work together and how it helps with colour correction.

For example:

If there are 256 different shades of RGB (primary colours), we could check to see if we have a correct exposure on an area by clicking a grey area to make sure that there are equal amounts there, such as R= 119 G= 119 B=119.

If one is unequal, then you have to change the others so that you can make everything balanced out

This led onto us talking about histograms and the actual importance they hold when we go and take photographs. The rule of thumb for getting a good capture is to get your histogram more to the right (e.g. making it more over exposed.) Now this may seem strange to do, however this allows the highlights to have more information stored in them and giving more subtlety in the tonal ranges. So when it comes to editing the picture, you can avoid loosing any information in any area if you decided to darken the image in RAW for example.

I also learnt the use of the HDR feature as well! If you are in a situation where you cannot change your histogram at the risk of loosing information in your image, you can use the HDR feature to give a more rounded exposure that will give the information in all areas of the picture by combining multiple images of different exposures.


So yeah, that was just a general overview of what I got up to this week… A lot isn’t it? There was more I could have included, but all I have mentioned was probably the more interesting stuff I think! Next week will begin to get more serious, and I can’t wait for it as it means more information is gonna be chucked at me and I so ready to absorb it all! Until next time!

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The Move, Adjustment and Settling

When they said it was going to be intense, they weren’t kidding. And that even before I moved to the USA!

The past year has been a blur of sorts. It was hard to believe that this time last year, I was even considering the notion of studying in the USA. Of course I had the option of places in Europe, but obviously I had to be the odd one out and be different. So begun the process of talking to lectures about advice and opinions, before I settled on trying out The International Centre of Photography in New York.

This was the beginning stages of what was a long and tiring process; never before I had to write a proposal of my work at such a high level of writing. Yet I still managed it; I think it was down to my determination of getting everything right and not leaving anything to chance helped. As well as getting lecturers to proof read it all!
Soon, everything had been handed in, and began the waiting period of hearing anything.

Waiting.

Waiting.

Waiting.

*ping*

When the e-mail came through stating that I had got my place in the programme, I screamed. In a restaurant. Yeah I was quite excited… But still, the feelings that were bursting through me was unreal. Words could not explain it at all. But now it was real, it was time to start prepping for the travels. And that meant getting my visa (however that’s a story I don’t want to get into as I fear for my blood pressure rising…)

Time flew by, and before I knew it, I was leaving the house at 4am. The flight was how flights should be; smooth and steady. But the excitement was building up inside me more and more, eager to actually start this new adventure. In the first week of being in The Big Apple, my family and I started the basics of moving into my accommodation and getting the essentials for me to live in some sort of student way (don’t worry I bought all the snacky stuff later on!)
We also planned the journey I would take in the mornings to actually get to ICP, so I had an understanding of where I needed to head to so I wouldn’t get lost (although the travelling system is fairly straight forward there.)

And then I was left all by myself. It was emotional saying goodbye to my parents as we all knew how big and life changing this could be for me. Tears were shed by everyone, par my brother who seemed more interested in Youtube at the time (although I’m hoping there was some emotion later on though.)
I know that for the past two years I have essentially lived on my own in Coventry, but this was different. Living alone, in a different country thousands of miles away? It’s the same but not the same. And I will always miss home, that’s a given.

But I wasn’t given much time to dwell on that as the orientation period was starting. For 3 weeks.

Yes you read that right, 3 weeks. And it may seem like a long time. but with the amount covered (darkrooms, DML, printing, Library etc) it was needed. And having it all spaced out helped as well, as it allowed everything to be taken in. What I found to be very interesting (and also a good way to bond people from the different courses) was the Scavenger Hunt. Rather then your traditional hunt of finding items, we were given set themes that we could interpret fully and do whatever we wanted with.
And the ability to be free and shoot whatever was amazing, and I felt like that I came out with some interesting shoots. But the main thing was that I had a fun time shooting, which is the main thing. Here are some of the images I shot:

Edit1_46 Edit1_47 spirit Edit1_1 Edit1_25 Edit1_36 Edit1_41

So as I type this out, I’m prepping for my first proper week at ICP. This is where I’m gonna be starting all my classes in full and start my journey into learning so much. However, I don’t want to bore you all with writing about everything! I have created a youtube channel where I will be making monthly vlogs at least saying what I have learnt etc. I’ve already shot a video about my classes and scavenger hunt, so click on the video below to find out more (when I publish it)!

The Beginning! August-September Vlog

Until in a months time people…