Whilst reading/viewing Five thousand days: Press photography in a changing word, I’d noted 3 photographs as possible subjects for Assignment 4. The book was chock full of brilliant, thought provoking photographs, but these 3 stood out for reasons mentioned below.
I’m now struggling to pick one on which to base my essay, and so I’m going to try a little experiment. I’m going to ask my fellow students (and anyone else who may read this learning log) which photograph they’d like to read an essay about, and why. Please take the poll and comment directly on this post with your suggestions. Thanks.
Tanks and soldiers of the 7th Armoured Brigade gather in the Kuwaiti desert for an address by US Marine General Tommy Franks. March 2003. Dan Chung The Guardian (p93).
I’m in this photo, somewhere. Operation TELIC was my 3rd operational deployment and my first time in the Middle East. At the tender age of 22, I’d been in Kuwait for 6 weeks. This address happened shortly before the invasion. I remember it vividly and can even remember seeing the gantry suspended from a crane that the photographer would have been stood in. The caption is actually inaccurate. The soldiers in the photograph are from 16 Air Assault Brigade.
Brian Kane is 6 foot tall and weighs just 6st 10lb. He has been in hospital many times to try and cure him but he thinks he is fat when he looks in the mirror. Roger Allen The daily Mirror (p140).
My tutor has recommended that I try and continue my exploration of Body Image issues in men, which I began to look at in Assignment 3. As my tutor stated, the topic has had very little exposure so there is scope for some unique work. But because of this, there are not many photographs in this area to study or write an essay about. For that very reason, this image jumped out at me when I saw it and read the accompanying caption.
Empty weaving shed at Bradford’s biggest mill, Lister’s Manningham Mill. The textile industry in the north of England has collapsed in recent times. There are now fewer than 1000 people employed in textiles in Bradford, once the woollen textiles capital of the world. Tim Smith The Observer (p153).
I grew up in the shadow of Lister’s Mill, living just a stones throw away. It was one of many derelict places where kids with nothing better to do could go exploring/trespassing. What would have once been a been a thriving industrial area had become a very impoverished area, with high unemployment, high crime rate and large amounts of social housing. The mill dominated the Bradford skyline as a symbol of Britishness (the industrial revolution) which is in stark contrast to the perception of Manningham that many have today. With 75% of Manningham’s residents being Muslim¹, the relic of the mill now competes with the countries largest Mosque for domination of the skyline.
So there we are, 3 very different images. Please let me know your thoughts below. Thanks in advance.
Update – 6/4/16
It was really insightful to hear the thoughts of some of my course-mates. Some of their comments can be read in this post’s comments section, and I’ve also ‘cut & paste’ some comments from the OCA Facebook page (below). All said and done, I’ve decided to go with the general consensus and study Image number 2.
As for tutor feedback, I think if you go against it you need to write something explaining why.
I think Andrew and the tutor both have good points for and against, down to you really to think if it’s something you want to explore further.
Kate Aston That’s a tough choice – I would go for 2 or 3. I think my gut favourite would be 3, I saw some great images by Jonas Bendiksen taken in Bradford textile mills. http://www.openforbusiness.uk.com/stories/jonas-bendiksen/