Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Assignment Two – Another Session

As planned, I returned to Piccadilly Gardens, Manchester, this week, looking to take more pictures of people eating in a public space for Assignment Two.  Whilst I wasn’t restricting myself to particular types of picture, I had decided, after reviewing the outcomes from the previous session, that it would be interesting to look at more people ‘eating on the move’, which had only emerged to a limited degree in the last group, and also to see if I could extend the ‘demographics’ of my subject group – in particular the age profile.  Once again, I worked, more or less, between 12noon and 2pm, to some extent moving around to look for opportunities, but in one period of around 45 minutes, staying in the same place, watching an open area where people were crossing the tramlines and where I had already observed people ‘eating on the move’.  Towards the end of my session, I also looked for ‘scene-setting’ shots, taking in more of the overall setting, but including groups of people eating.  I tried using a wide angle lens for some of them, but have not been happy with the outcomes – too general and with a degree of distortion that didn’t sit well with the other images in the sequence.  As a result, all of the images that have emerged from this session are shot with an 85mm prime lens – it’s pleasantly liberating to not think about ‘zoom-in’ or ‘pull-back’, but to just select shots that will work with the lens and then position oneself accordingly!
The following is a selection of the ‘eating on the move’ pictures.

There were others, but using the criteria that I set out before the last session, these are the ones most likely to pass the test – particularly on the grounds of technical quality and ‘non-negativity’.  They don’t do anything to extend the age profile, of course, but eating on the move seems to be (understandably) more the preserve of the young.
I did, though, find some more examples of people sitting, alone or in small groups, and have selected these four as the best from that bunch (some of which do broaden the age range).

As I have said, I was also interested in looking for some ‘scene-setters’ that could add informative variety to the set that I eventually put together for submission.  The wide angle shots didn’t work too well, as I have said, but these two use the statue and the fountains to provide context/interest.

I think I now have 20-30 reasonable quality images that cover the sort of range that I was looking for when I started out, and which pretty much meet my broad selection criteria.  I need to look at them more carefully in the next few days, but I am hoping that I can select the 10 or so that I need to submit the assignment within the next week.

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