Assignment 3 Visual storytelling – Preparation and first images

I emailed my tutor on 9th March with my initial idea for the assignment. He replied with some advice:

“This sounds like an interesting opportunity. You’ll certainly get useful feedback from Jesse and others at the meeting – try to go with some ideas and any examples you have. You could look through documentary projects that follow a person, or a group and take examples of the type of projects that interest you. Look up ‘country doctor’ and ‘Minimata’ by W Eugene Smith, Gordon Park’s Harlem: Classic photo essays that are predominantly from the heyday of 1950s magazine articles such as Picture Post and Life show the variety of styles, subject matter and interpretations that can be used within the framework of a photo essay. For later styles look at the work of Joel Sternfeld and Paul Reas .

My advice before shooting would be to get to know Kelly (without taking up too much of her time!). From these discussions you can hopefully agree on a theme, or a thread, that can interest both of you and give Kelly a sense that you are telling her story, as much as your own. That sense of agency will be important for her to feel that you are with her in a joint project, and it will give you a common ground to explore.”

I found time to research the bodies of work that Derek mentioned and found them a good reference for a starting point. I also researched the early work of Astrid Kirchherr, famous for her photographs of the Beatles during their early career in Germany:

  I was not able to discuss my work at the study group as I had nothing to show at that time although I had found the time to talk to Kelly about the project. She responded by giving me a schedule for a visit to London  and the recording studio on 31st March. This was useful and provided some photographs as a starting point. For various reasons she was not able to busk on this day and when she returned home she went away with her family for the Easter weekend. I processed and edited the images I had taken and I am thinking about the other images I need to take of Kelly’s life in the coming weeks. Here are a selection of the images I made on 31st March:


#KellyPeffers @kellypeffers #downtownartist #playstudio

Kelly has a local gig on 19th April and I am trying to arrange to take photographs of her busking locally and relaxing at home with her husband and children. I already have some images of Kelly at the Phoenix Theatre rehearsing for “Wyrd Sisters”. I hope that before my assignment deadline, I will be able to take some pictures in costume.


#KellyPeffers @kellypeffers #downtownartist #playstudio

21 April 2015

Kelly has used two of my photos for her promotional piece in the Plymouth Herald:


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