I will openly admit that I was nervous when coming into PICBOD. In previous years it had had a main focus on Naked vs Nude imagery and previous students, although always had a choice decided to explore this area. I am in no way shy but felt that given my age as a mature student that this area could be very uncomfortable to work in as the rest of the group is so young. Past experiences at university only increased my paranoia in this area so I was really not looking forward to it.
Once again I had little reason to be concerned, the format had changed with a focus on identity representation. This opened up numerous avenues to explore and although the naked vs nude was part of it, ultimately I felt I could choose to work in any way I chose.
The format for the module really worked. The weekly tasks were challenging and required us to work fast with demanding deadlines. It was also highly beneficial to be able to sit down and get feedback on a weekly basis. Out of all the ways we have worked in the last 18 months I felt this was the most effective from a pedagogical perspective. The demands naturally caused some consternation with the students and the process created some complaints as people were not expecting to be pushed so hard. However it takes a process like this to make people aware of the standards expected if you wish to be successful. Those that rose to the challenge could take pride in the fact that they will be able to do the same in the real world. This format is something that really needs to remain for future years.
PICBOD coincided with deadlines from two other modules, 252mc Digital Media and 201mc Professional Practice. The combination of all these modules at once made this the most challenging term yet meaning that the importance of planning, organisation and preparation were vital. These are also very important lessons and skills to have as we need to get used to working to tight deadlines.
I have really enjoyed the content in PICBOD, it has continued to push me to develop my artistic skills. I am now just over halfway through the degree and my outlook towards photography has changed dramatically. My once unshakeable drive towards commercialism has changed and I am becoming increasing interested in the artistic side. I knew when I picked Coventry that it was a risk and could easily have become disillusioned but developing the artistic skills is critical to creative work in the commercial area and I am both glad and increasing in confidence. Overall I am still someway behind my peers on this front but will continue to challenge myself to improve.
I am happy with my final images and this is a subject that I would like to continue with. However I am aware that Robbie Cooper is continuing his work in this area and will need to stay appraised of his projects to avoid clashing. An example of this would be that during the project I considered the idea of exploring some of our primal emotions such as anger and pleasure and considered the concept of shooting people engaged in a sexual act. I was surprised to find Robbie has already started down this route with his study of porn.