Task 4 – Negotiation.

You should precipitate a live encounter with a stranger and make a series of images with that subject. During this process you should both depict the subject in the environment and at some point venture into the subject’s personal space, you should do this and come away with at least one personal story from them.

Do the exercise once without showing the subject the images, then share the work with them and make another set. Consider how this effects the power-relationship.

I was very apprehensive about approaching this task as photographing strangers is something I am definitely not confident with and need to improve. As I live on quite a big complex of student houses, I decided to use this to my advantage as students in the other houses are strangers to me. I also felt that this would give some mutual ground as a starting point.

This gave me the opportunity to meet Ben. Although I was nervous about the task in hand, I explained what I was doing, why I wanted to take his photograph and the module I was creating it for. Ben was very easy to get along with although not keen to have his photograph taken – I decided to take this as a challenge rather than back away and work with someone that would not mind so much.

Before taking any photographs, I wanted to get to know a bit more about Ben. He is currently studying his second year of his BA Hons Journalism & Media degree with the aspiration to become a sports journalist. He is currently producing work for Coventry Blaze, Coventry City FC and Birmingham City FC. Learning what a passionate writer he is, I decided to capture Ben whilst he was working. Conveniently at the time, he was working on his macbook so this meant I could set up the shot quite easily as well as photographing him fairly natural without making him too uncomfortable. After I took a few shots, he was adamant that he didn’t want to see but after suggesting that he may feel more comfortable after seeing them he decided to have a look. I then continued to take a few more where he didn’t seem as tense and intimidated by the camera.


Out of the images I took, I decided to use this one as my final. I like the concentration it has captured and the tight crop which makes it quite intimate. As the photograph was taken in his bedroom, I ventured into his personal space and learning more about him and his potential career as a writer I reflected this in my image of work. There were more photographs which showed him working on his laptop and other working materials but I don’t think the images were as effective as this. Reflecting back on the task, once I got talking to Ben it didn’t feel as daunting as I had imagined although I was nervous. I think that we were both students and around the same age, it was easier to connect and conversate therefore if I were to attempt the task again, I would challenge myself a bit more by photographing someone older.


~ by victoriasimkissphotography on February 4, 2014.

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