Developing Practice-Obsession. Contact sheets, and annotations Knowle West Project.


In the contact sheets above:

I met this family during the spring, I had knocked to ask if I could take a photo of their garden, because it had all sorts of fascinating things in; from pretend flowers in hanging baskets, to a pillar each side of the front door that have horse head statues on the top.  It was evident that this household had a passion for horses there is even a Black Smiths Sealey Anvil beside the front door.

During the course of the summer months I found myself getting more and more involved in the community in Knowle West. I began taking photos’ of residents on their garden and in the local cafe as well as in the street, where I was asked by a man if I could take a photo of him with his dog.  As soon as I began this journey of exploration in this area I soon came to realise how friendly the residents are, and so helpful generally too.

Attached are some contact sheets from two shoots that I did in July. These cover portraiture and place.

Below are  some places I have photographed, the cafe is where I stop for lunch when I have time, it is a family run business who are welcoming, I have built up a friendship with Kerry and her family.

The places in these contact sheets consist of streets that are relevant to the area I have been working in, including the street where my family home is, from several generations ago. The contact sheet also  includes buildings that have relevance to this project, such as the local Community Centre that was  once my Father, uncle, and Auntie’s school.

I took photographs inside of the community centre for many reasons, one for the fact it still has many original features and amenities.  Seeing the originality of this building fascinated me and I had a long conversation  with June who works there.  I have been keeping in contact with June, and I have since been back to ask questions regarding certain aspect of the building and enquiring about events in the area.

June has lived in Knowle West all of her life and is very proud of the area, she takes very good care of the community centre, it is evident that she is passionate about her job, including the historical factors and the  knowledge she has of the area by her enthusiasm .






Tea Dance shoot- Plus photographs’ on white card of what was the local public house, before it was demolished. Photos’ of the Public house are from the Community Centres archive.

I have been to Knowle West for another shoot, and I decided to take some video footage of the hall in the  Community Centre and outside in the grounds.  As well as photographs. During tutorial my tutor suggested I take another photo of the print from a local public house that I had photographed over the summer, with a plain white background.  I went into the office and asked if I could take more photographs from their archive of the public house and the local swimming pool which also has been demolished; these are also included in the contact sheets below.

The public house was a very popular place with the residents to socialise, so I have been told by many people of various  ages.  I have been told that they are saddened by the fact the public house had been demolished and replaced by flats, and how they think the flats look ugly and out of place, ruining Melvin Square, where the public house once was.

The weather was glorious and the sun was shining through the windows, which was fantastic.  The shoot went well,  but unfortunately a few photographs were not very sharp.

The shadows and light really added definition and atmosphere to the photos.  I was very pleased with the ambient light source on this shoot and I found I did not have to increase the ISO very much, I found 400-800 was sufficient.



Photographing the Tea Dance group in the Hall at the Community Centre

I took full body portraits, and close up portraits using ambient light, I placed my subjects in front of the  windows and by the side of windows, stood slightly at an angle facing me and directly in front facing straight on.

I want to produce natural looking photographs, which represent my project and my findings within Knowle West Community Centre, thus showing the representation of an area which has a fantastic community spirit with people that are full of knowledge and that have long living history of residency in Knowle West.


I found the ambient light was very good again today.  I used a 50 mm lens and never needed to increase the ISO because I could use a much wider aperture.  I found some photographs were very crisp sharp, and others blurry.  I am going to find it difficult to get used to I think.

A shoot in the Northern Slopes and a residents garden.

I decided to venture around Knowle West and take some photographs in hope of finding new things and opportunities to document.

I found a Church that my father, Uncles, and Auntie were Christened in that my Uncle had mentioned.  I photographed the Church which is called St Barnabas Church.

A man saw me photographing a palm tree in one of the gardens in the street and we began speaking. He explained he had planted a Christmas tree.  I asked if I could take a look and I was invited to have a look around his garden.  We spoke about Knowle West and his experiences, he mentioned that he lived in the same area as myself for five years, but him and his wife never settled so moved back to Knowle West twenty years ago.

I noticed he had small plastic figures inside of plant pots and bird baths along with other quirky objects.  The garden was well kept and had different parts within the space, such as gazebo, patio area and green house.  I was able to photograph the Northern Slopes from a different perspective because his garden backed onto it.  I realised how far I travel along this area and was shocked to find that the mans house was only a few streets away from Bedminster, which is where I ended my journey.

This shoot was a success, because I managed to get some beautiful landscape shots which incorporate shadows, depth and blocks of colours

During my six mile walk I came across some tipped rubbish which had toys a chair and other items that created an oddness to the place in which they stood and  a juxta position with bland colours from old timber fencing and colourful aspects from the toys. The photograph is full of natural and man made products situated in a strange area where all the objects are out of place. I enjoy finding quirky things to photograph and I knew when I found this that it was going to be a successful shoot .








Looking at the reviews, I find there is a close local community there that I could get involved in, I should imagine there will be varied age groups.  I will be calling them to explain who I am and to find out some more information and then see whether I can photograph them.  I would like to find out what activities they hold and find one I feel suits my project, and take it from there.

At the moment there are a lot of workshops I need to attend due to loan of equipment that I must attend, in order to loan anything such as a zoom voice recorder; that I will use for the video voice over, as well as learning different technical skills.  These busy days at University means I have less time to visit the friendship group and tea dance group, due to running on Monday and Tuesday which seem to fall on the days that I have to be in the university.  This was one reason I decided to go Friday to create more work and find more ideas that I could add into my project.

This project will not end on this assignment deadline, because there is so many exciting activities to be involved in that I can capture and document.However I shall add a larger and more varied pieces of work onto the work I did over the summer weeks.  I intend to  produce a short video with audio and still images that represent my project in an appropriate way, along with a few large photographs that shall enhance my finished assignment in December.

Northern Slopes, and video clips of the Community Hall. Including St Barnabas Church on contact sheets below.

more contact sheets below of the Northern Slopes from another shoot, it was a very misty day.  St Barnabas Church is also on the contact sheets below.






Photographing and videoing the Friendship Group, at the Community Centre.

Shoot 1


Shoot 2



The Friendship Group has various ages, there are older people and people with various disabilities who are accompanied by carers of the Brandon Trust, the Friendship group is very friendly and welcoming.

I began my work at this very large group by introducing myself via microphone, because I felt this was the easiest and quickest way, because of the large number of people and the very little time I had before the bingo began. I have also typed out my speech, so anyone that was not present or could not hear due to hearing impediments for example can read the print

I explain how some photographs maybe used in my photo book at a later date.  I also expressed how I would be uploading my video online as well as some images, that will represent my project.  I have printed out release forms and handed them out on the tables to be collected at the end of each week that I attend.  I will be taking the release forms with me each time just in case some was unable to attend on the first week as well as for any new members that may join during my time there.  It is vital I have permission on paper as well as verbally, so there is no come back of any sort at a later date.

Shoot 3

Today went extremely well, the ambient light was bright as usual, and was coming from both sides of the hall, spilling over the floor.  The people are more relaxed around me now and have been coming up to me to ask to have their photograph taken

I have been concentrating on taking full body portraits whilst making good use of the ambient light.  Unfortunately I cut some peoples feet off, because I am still struggling with the distance whilst composing the shot.  For still portraits I have been using the tripod, because the camera I am using is much heavier than my camera, thus I am trying to produce sharp photographs, which is not always successful.  I have also been videoing the group each week.