We were given the opportunity to travel to Bradford to visit both the Impressions Gallery and the National Media Museum. The first challenge was to get there, all of us, on time to Bradford. Surprisingly me and a group of others managed to catch a train at around 10am and made it into Bradford successfully at 10.30 with no problems. The next challenge was to find the Impressions Gallery, as this was where we would meet Karl and the rest of the group at 11am and I can proudly say we did just that! It was then decided that we would have some time to get some breakfast while we waited for the others, so off to Wetherspoons we went. Once everyone had arrived we were given an introduction to the Impressions Gallery by one of the staff members who told us about the current work they have on display there as part of ‘The Roads to Wigan Pier’ exhibit. (See more information below)
We were given a task to complete to think further into one of the images from the exhibition. This is the image I chose:
Taken by Huw Davies, this photograph shows scrap metal merchant Alan Grey and his Sons sitting in front of a crane which is in the process of being dismantled and sold for scrap metal. I like the image because although it is a pretty basic portrait, the people’s faces reflect a genuine happiness which has an effect on the viewer. The photograph makes you think of the story behind the sons, their father’s career and what life was like at the time. The composition of this image is pretty basic, with the people taking up the majority of the foreground and the crane and buildings in the background still in focus. This creates a clear focal point and keeps the viewers attention remaining on the main subject of the photograph which is the people. Although it was taken relatively close up, Davies remained far back enough to include a detailed foreground with all three people completely in frame. The basic natural lighting of the image reflects the genuine happiness of the people rather than a synthetically staged scene.
After spending some time in the Impressions Gallery, we returned to Wetherspoons for lunch before walking to the close-by National Media Museum. Rather than an actual written task, we were just given things to try and find in the museum, giving us a lot of free time to explore the various exhibits. I learnt a lot about the origins of photography and some of the old equipment that was used in the establishing years of this art. This was extremely useful and I found out a lot of information that was particularly handy for my ‘History of Photojournalism’ module.