Student Ref and Course: ‘Steve513632’ – OCA BA (Hons) Undergraduate – Photography

Expressing Your Vision

Photography has been a part of my life now for just over forty years. I have been a Licentiate of the Royal Photographic Society since September 2010. I believe the preparation and accomplishment one achieves for this standard in photography, was certainly a great moral booster for a person such as me.

It also prepared me, for a deeper interest in photography, its history and my own further development. I now feel that I should reward my dedication (and expenditure) to this hobby of over forty years by studying for a formal qualification. I had approached other places of study, however, with my disability, my only sensible option was the OCA. I hope the both of us follow the right road…

My first thoughts …

As an individual I always feel that I may have spent too much on photo magazines in an effort to improve my skills in photography. I believe that learning to improve one’s image taking, to understand the elements of constructing an image is an important pastime for many. This fact is supported by the length of time some of the popular weekly or monthly magazines have been in publication.

Photography was a hobby limited to the well off in its early years, however, as its prices fell and interest grew it was popular the world over – it was never cheap in the halcyon days of analogue (in my case) 35mm,  besides the equipment purchased, at the back of one’s mind was the cost of the film and it’s processing. This, was a limiting factor for many who, most often chose each image taking moment methodically, I certainly did! I always remember that prior to pressing the shutter on the camera,  ‘£’ sign would [should have] pop into my mind.  I could hardly afford to use the motor-drive that was fitted to my Pentax ME Super. It only took around five seconds to use up a 36 exposure roll of film.

It has now become a multi million pound industry. Everyone and his Daughter has a camera within reach and it is thanks to mobile phones having a camera as standard on the majority of models that has brought image taking to the masses – again! Who would have thought that a mobile phone (which is an entity in itself) is responsible for bringing us images of falling meteorites, tsunamis and floods? I class them as a still image camera, a movie camera and a picture desk editor in one and the development of which has led to the quality digital equipment we have available today. However, (and there has to be) I still cannot quite believe I managed to convince my wife (not that many years ago) that a 256mb compact flash card was a steal at £115!

We are now fully into the digital age and with no signs of slowing down we are presented almost on a daily basis a plethora of equipment and gadgets. The digital camera has developed into a capable piece of equipment producing larger and larger sensors, producing even bigger file sizes that require even bigger drives and flash cards – heaven… At the time of writing I should point out that I have seen a 512GB card for around £1 per Gigabyte – Bargain!


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