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AS Photography Scheme of Work


The AS Art & Design: Photography course contains two Units of Study: Unit 1 - Coursework Portfolio - 50% of AS Unit 2 - Externally Set Assignment - 50% of AS (approximately 10 weeks preparation plus 5 hours in controlled conditions)

There are four Assessment Objectives: AO1 Develop ideas through sustained and focused investigations informed by contextual and other sources, demonstrating analytical and critical understanding. AO2 Experiment with and select appropriate resources, media, materials, techniques and processes, reviewing and refining ideas as the work develops. AO3 Record in visual and/or other forms ideas, observations and insights relevant to intentions, demonstrating an ability to reflect on work and progress AO4 Present a personal, informed and meaningful response demonstrating critical understanding, realising intentions and, where appropriate, making connections between visual, written, oral or other elements.

The AS coursework should ideally be completed before the Christmas holidays. Therefore, Unit 1 is divided into 2 parts, each represented by a theme and lasting a half term. The two themes are: Portraiture and The City. Candidates will be encouraged to choose 2 or 3 key challenges in order to focus their investigations in each half term. They will produce a range of work including several resolved final pieces which will form their Unit 1 Portfolio alongside prep work, a process and critical studies book and a blog/website. Candidates will learn a range of photographic skills, techniques and processes throughout the course. They will explore the history of photography and be exposed to the work of a wide variety of artists, genres and styles. Theme #1: ‘Portraiture’ "Where did I come from? What am I? Where am I going?" Paul Gauguin The art historical genre of ‘Portraiture’ has changed its meaning many times, particularly since the invention of photography. The purpose of this theme is to encourage candidates to reflect on and explore many and varied approaches to the representation of human identity through light and lens based media. This includes a wide range of work including traditional formal studio portraiture, fashion and family portraits to contemporary, conceptual approaches including the use of appropriated imagery, installation and performance. Candidates should be introduced to a variety of photographic work through presentations, class discussions, practical activities, gallery visits and home learning assignments. They should then select 2 or 3 of the following Challenges (or generate challenges of their own) to help them focus their investigations and provide evidence of meeting all the Assessment Objectives.

‘Portraiture’ Challenges * Object Lesson - Choose one or more objects that represent aspects of your personality. You might decide to select objects from a particular location e.g. your bedroom. Experiment with a variety of ways of photographing these objects and present the resulting images imaginatively. * The Mask - Choose a disguise or mask and photograph yourself or a friend/family member wearing it. Consider the ways in which a disguise might reveal, rather than hide, aspects of your personality. (Aziz + Cucher, Cindy Sherman, Orlan, Angus Fairhurst, Ralph Eugene Meatyard)

* Rear View - Photograph people from behind and/or the backs of people's heads. You may decide to include your shadow in these images or focus on unusual/surprising details. Edit and sequence these images to create a coherent portfolio. (Lee Friedlander, Sophie Calle, Lorna Simpson, Joel Meyerowitz)

* States of Mind - Create a series of portraits illustrating different states of mind e.g. boredom, euphoria, wistfulness etc. Experiment with the use of colour and tone, lighting and location and consider the use of titles and other text to support the presentation of the final images. (Francesca Woodman, Diane Arbus, Seydou Keita)

* Just Do It - Create a series of images representing verbs such as eating, sleeping, laughing, crying, walking. Consider the different ways in which these actions can be represented photographically. (John Baldessari, Richard Long, Andy Goldsworthy, Francis Al每s, Robin Rhode)

* Found - Create an image based on a found photograph - this could be an old photo from a family album or one you have appropriated from a newspaper or magazine. Re-create, distort, or re-photograph this image in a different context to alter its meaning. (Joseph Cornell) * Hidden - Create out of focus or silhouette portraits and/or experiment with extremely shallow depth of field. Consider more abstract, evocative approaches to your subject, perhaps drawing attention to a particular feature of their bodies/faces or creating a suggestion of their presence rather than a naturalistic representation. (Ralph Eugene Meatyard, Harry Callahan)

*Post Secret - Create a series of photographic/collaged postcards revealing secrets about yourself and/or your friends. This could be a collaborative project. *Making a Statement - Write something you believe in really strongly and make a picture to accompany it. Explore the visual language and strategies advertisers and political campaigners use to get their point across. Think about combining text and image. (Barbara Kruger, Jenny Holzer) * Repetition - Make a photographic document and/or video of yourself repeatedly doing an everyday activity like getting dressed or brushing your teeth. You may need assistance in creating these images. You

could make this process absurd e.g. getting dressed in all the clothes in your wardrobe or deliberately getting the activity wrong. Alternatively, you could approach the task with scientific rigour, almost like an ethnographer documenting the rituals of indigenous tribes. (Francis Alys, Erwin Wurm) * Inside Out - Attempt to create a photographic image of the inside of your head; your thoughts, feelings, desires, anxieties and hopes (plus all the random stuff that goes on when you’re not really concentrating). * Trace - Document in a series of photographs all the things you touch/eat/smell/taste/hear in a single day. * Back to the Future - Re-create a famous portrait from photographic or art history. Either attempt to get the details exactly right (costume, hairstyle, make-up, prosthetics, background, setting etc.) and/or create a deliberately comic or satirical contemporary reworking of the original image. Alternatively, re-enact a famous historical moment using your friends and family. (Yinka Shonibare, Cindy Sherman) * Time Flies - Photograph your future self. * MPD - Create a multiple self-portrait using digital manipulation to create the illusion that several versions of you are occupying the same space and time. Alternatively, combine one or more images of you (and possibly others) in the same image using either digital or analogue techniques. (Paul M Smith, John Stezaker) * Generations - Create a series of images (diptychs, triptychs, polyptychs) representing several generations of your (or someone else's) family. (Nicholas Nixon) * In Motion - Experiment with longer shutter speeds to include the notion of time passing in a portrait. (Ralph Eugene Meatyard, Alexey Titarenko)

* Reflections - Experiment with reflected portraits in a variety of surfaces e.g. mirrors, water, household objects. Explore true and distorted reflections and reflect on our relationship to our reflected image. (Lee Friedlander, Harry Callahan)

* Stalker - Arrange with a friend to follow them for a day, documenting their movements, their behaviour and how they choose to spend their time. You might decide to show them the resulting images and ask them for their reactions. This could even be in the form of a recorded interview which accompanies the display of the final sequence of photographs/slides. (Sophie Calle) * Odd Jobs - Create a series of portrait images representing a variety of types of work. (Diane Arbus, August Sander)

*Home Truths - Make a model of your perfect house, a place you would like to call home, out of everyday objects. Photograph the process. (Donald Rodney, Thomas Demand)

* Projection - Create one or more photographic images in which one image is projected and superimposed on another to create a composite portrait. You might like to use an old found photograph projected onto a living person or a 35mm slide projected onto a wall and re-photographed. Think carefully about the combination of the images and what they mean together. You might even want to experiment with more than two images combined in a multiple composite constructed from a series of projections and superimpositions. (Davina Wilby)

Theme #2: The City "To lose oneself in a city -- as one loses oneself in a forest -- that calls for a quite different schooling." Walter Benjamin The rise of the modern city runs parallel to the development of photography as the perfect medium to document the experience of urban life. The purpose of this theme is to encourage candidates to reflect on and explore a wide variety of approaches to the representation of the city through light and lens based media. This includes architectural and street photography alongside more experimental and contemporary approaches that embrace abstraction, performance, video and conceptual strategies. Candidates should be introduced to a variety of photographic work through presentations, class discussions, practical activities, gallery visits and home learning assignments. They should then select 2 or 3 of the following Challenges (or generate challenges of their own) to help them focus their investigations and provide evidence of meeting all the Assessment Objectives. ‘The City’ Challenges * The Crowd - Document people on the street as they walk, talk, pose, shop, laugh and move through the city. You might decide to take an objective, secretive approach or to engage your subjects in the process of making the image. Think about all the other sources of meaning in your image - street and shop signs, colour symbolism, light and shadow. Think about the edges of your composition - what are you going to include and exclude from the image? Where will you decide to crop? How will you control the chaos of the street to make coherent images? (Lee Friedlander, Garry Winogrand, Robert Frank, Joel Meyerowitz, William Klein, Philip Lorca Dicorcia)

* Maps - Trace a line on a map of city streets (this could either be a random shape or you could superimpose the shape of a letter, for example). Walk along the streets on your map and photograph anything that interests you. Mark the places on the map where you took the images and think about how to present these images imaginatively. (Richard Long, Hamish Fulton)

*Buildings - Whether they are dwarfing pedestrians or falling apart, machine-like in their regular lines or more curvy, seductive and organic, monochrome or brightly coloured, buildings dominate the city and we can’t fail to have strong reactions to them. Create a series of images exploring your relationship to the built environment. There is lots of potential for both description and expression, documentary naturalism and abstraction in this assignment. (Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, Harry Callahan, Idris Khan, Bernd and Hiller Becker) * City Surfaces - The city is like a giant canvas, a patchwork of forms, patterns, textures and surfaces. (Aaron Siskind, Lewis Baltz, Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, Sean Scully, Jindrich Styrsky, Ralph Gibson)

* Transport and Travel - Create a series of images that describe how people get from A to B in the city. (Jacques-Henri Lartigue, Stephen Gill, Dolores Marat, Martin Parr, Robert Frank, Wolfgang Tillmans)

* Signs and Symbols - The city is full of signs, some of which are helpful, some banal and some positively surreal. Some artists also create their own signs to add to the mayhem of competing information. Make a series of images that explore the function of signs and symbols in the city. You may also decide to add some of your own. (David Shrigley, Gillian Wearing, William Eggleston)

* Shop Windows - Shop windows are a bit like photographs, offering us a tantalising, framed and seductive view of a world just out of reach. Lots of photographers have studied this phenomenon in their work. Make a series of images of shop windows thinking carefully about issues like viewpoint, angle, depth of field, composition, colour and the behaviour of light on reflective surfaces. (Eugene Atget, Lee Friedlander, Walker Evans, Louis Faurer) * Perspectives - Photographs can provide some very unusual perspectives of city life. Some artists have experimented with dramatic angles and points of view, others with combining multiple images to build up a Cubist-inspired collage of a particular time and place. (Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, David Hockney) * Liminal Spaces - These are the in-between spaces, the ill-defined places in the city, the alleyways, corridors and pieces of unclaimed territory that divide one significant site from another. Document some of these places and reflect on your feelings towards them. (Richard Billingham, David Shrigley, Brassai, Lewis Baltz)

* A load of rubbish - Lots of artists and photographers have been fascinated by the stuff people throw away. Some artists transform and interact with these discarded objects whereas others are happy simply to document them. Create a series of images that explore the notion of rubbish. (Sandrine Estrade Boulet, Keith Arnatt, Sue Webster & Tim Noble)

AS Photography Scheme of Work  
AS Photography Scheme of Work  

A series of suggested activities for two related themes: Portraiture and The City.