Halifax photostory pt 2
Reviewing past work
We were set a task to review a photostory from a past student. We were told to comment on the positives and negatives and this research will help us with our own work on indesign.
Positive: Strong opening shot. You can instantly tell what is happening and get a jist of what the story is about. There is a good amount of space for the title and supporting opening text.
Negative: The use of red text does not go well with the photo. It looks unprofessional and takes away from the power of the image. The font isnt good for this photostory either, they need a simpler font to make it look neater. As well as the red font there's also another colour font (white) in the bottom left hand corner. The use of two colours and positioning of the text makes the page feel disjointed.
Positives: I really like the images theyve chosen, especially the bottom right one
Negatives: The way they've placed the text makes the page look untidy and cluttered. The grey background was not a good choice and doesnt fit in well with the images. It looks very unprofessional and the colour scheme doesnt fit with the pictures theyve chosen. They should have stuck to a white background with black text. Much like the text, the placing of the images makes the page seem disorganised and cluttered.
Positives: Good photos, especially the top right one. I feel like the composition really works in making the man in the middle the main subject.
Negatives: The positioning of the photos looks very unprofessional and seems as though they havent really thought about the design. The use of two colours for the text looks uninviting and messy. Theyve also centered the red text and left aligned the text to the right which adds to the untidy design
Annotated contact sheets
I went through and annotated the pictures on the contact sheets. By seeing them out in front of me it helped me edit down and choose the best to go in the story.

Photo edit
To help with my photo edit i've chosen 27 photos out of the 514 ive taken over 3 shoots and put them into contact sheets to help with editing down to the final 6 images. To help with my decision, i showed the contact sheets to the group who gave their views on which photos should stay and go. I then marked down next to the chosen photos with an X. From the 27 photos i managed to get down to 16. I cut them out individually and placed them next to eachother to try get a better feel as to which images i should get rid of for the edit of 6.
From looking at the contact sheets and seeing which images has a cross next to them i cut them all out and placed them next to eachother. This helped me to see which images didnt help the story and we'rent as relevant as others.
I displayed them to the class and asked them to turn over the images they thought were weaker than the others.
From getting feedback from the class i got the images down from 16 to 11. From there i did another re-edit and took out the image at the top of Steven smoking since it didnt fit with the set unfortunately because of the background although its still a strong image and shows him in a different and interesting location wih a drink.
An edit of 10
These are my final 6 images. I feel like they tell a story by themselves and stay true to steven and his personality.
I've noticed that non of the final photos have him drinking in them - but i feel that this doesnt matter because in the story you can see how he deals with alcohol.
i downloaded a selection of fonts to see which worked better.I found that the bold text distracted too much from the image but the thinner text made it have a more professional appearance.
Final Piece
A life with alcohol
When I was thinking about the title the first two that came into my head were 'Drunk in life, Drunk on life' I then thought about the word drunk more and realised it wasnt correct to use the word drunk for Steven, its was quite demeaning. Drunk is used for people on a night out - not for people with a serious illness. So I decided to change the name to 'A life with alcohol'. I found that it suited the whole story better.
I chose to use this font for the title because of how thin it was and how it didnt distract from the picture. It keeps the whole look of the page professional and neat.
I wanted to the layout to have a professional look so i kept the pictures in line with eachother. To keep with the professional look i set the text font to Arial and made it 'justified'.
There wasnt much space for captions to be underneath each image so i placed them at the bottom right in bold to make them more noticable.
1.Steven, previously Head of English at a Higher Board School
2.Alcohol and Cigarette for breakfast
3.Cider over cereal
4.Steven lunges towards the camera
5.Steven looks back on his past as a teacher
6.Stop writing on the walls!! No!!
7.Stevens’s daughter holds up a letter she’d wrote from her childhood - I hope you like my class stitching. I did it for you
8.Dragging on countless cigarette
9.Steven wakes up to a coffee and first cigarette of the day
10.Steven runs through his weekly schedule
11.Looking back at past essays from University
12.Fingers discoloured from cigarettes
13.Steven: past and present
Living with alcohol - Evaluation
Photographing Steven Dyson
The theme for my project was alcohol addiction. I already had a contact (Steven Dyson, my sisters dad) so it was easy to get in contact and arrange dates to shoot fast. It also helped that i already knew him. This sped up the process of photographing him since i didn't have to build up a rapport with the person to get comfortable with them. This allowed me to experiment more with my photography and ask in depth personal questions which helped me write the accompanying article. The only negative thing to do with the shoot was the distance. I was only able to go do 3 shoots with Steven since he lives in Halifax and I’m in Cheltenham. If there was more time and not so much distance i’d have liked to do more shoots to get a good amount of different locations.
My ideas haven't developed drastically throughout the project although artist and photo story research has helped me with photography ideas.
I think i’ve done a good amount of research on artists and their photo stories however i think i could have gone into more detail about the individual images that i found inspiring but its definitely helped me work out how i could incorporate Stevens belongings into the photographs.
The artists and their photo stories that inspired me the most were Larry Towell’s ‘USA. Pine Ridge, South Dakota' and Richard Bellingham’s ‘Rays a laugh’. I recreated one of Larry Towell’s images; this is evident in the past and present image which shows a younger photo of Steven which was held next to him. Billingham inspired me in the way that his images aren't pretty. They show real life problems which and show alcoholism as an illness, not something that can be fixed instantly.

This project has developed my skills when using flash. I’ve shot in different lighting such as inside a poorly lit room and outside on an overcast day and also an extremely sunny day. I chose to use flash to accentuate the details in Stevens flat and bring out the lines in his face which show the effects of alcohol over time.

If I could do this project again i’d like to explore it further and in depth possibly expanding by photographing more than one person and maybe their families. This would give a wider view of how people deal with alcohol issues and what effect it has on them and the people around them.

The message i wanted to convey through these photos was that theres a lot more to a person than meets the eye. And I believe i have managed to show this through my images. People have preconceived ideas of Steven thinking that he's a drunk with no job, but in reality Steven is highly intelligent, went to university and ended up becoming Head of English.

All together i’m extremely happy with my final piece and especially like my establishing shot.
Halifax photostory pt 2

Halifax photostory pt 2

Steven photostory

Creative Fields