Lee Grant – Photography Blog

Posts Tagged ‘NPPP

And so, what else is happening?

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Well, it certainly has been a while since I bothered posting about my ruminations on photography…. but you know, life gets busy and I figure there’s no point feeling like a slave to technology, particularly if there’s nothing much to be said. Not that this has been the case overall, and certainly the proverbial shitload has been going on, but you know…. I got a bit lazy and like I said, a lot’s been happening.

So what have I missed blogging about worth mentioning? Let’s see…. FotoFreo where I went to finally meet many e-buddies such as Andy Adams (Flak Photo), Mark McPherson (Big City Press), Rebecca Dagnall and Stacy Merfhar (both fab photographers), and where I also got to hang out with Amy Stein, Carry Levy, Jon Levy (no relation to Carry though, Jon runs Foto 8 in London), Brad Rimmer, Graham Miller (whose work I’ve posted about before and you couldn’t meet a nicer person), Sohrab Hura, Narelle Autio and many others. I also had the good fortune to be selected to participate in a Magnum workshop with Trent Parke, plus see a load of photo-shows and talks. In a word…. awesome experiences with a bunch of very interesting and lovely people. I could rattle on about how much fun I had but that would be boring. Suffice to say that the photo-community seems to me at least, to be a fun one. At least no one glazes over when you bang on and on about photography! I highly recommend photo festivals and am looking forward to one day getting over to the big ones in the US and Europe.

The National Portrait prize, in which I have a work is now traveling. The opening at the NPG was kinda fun. My mum was very funny and harassed the NPG photographer to track me down in order to photograph me in front of my work. Mums… what can I say!? ;) My work hung next to Ingvar Kenne‘s portrait of Alexis Wright, which was nice, as we are fans of each other’s work. Ingvar was last year’s winner, a judge in the Sony comp I won last year and another super nice bloke. He also features in Hijacked 2 (see below).

But most importantly (big drumroll please), I finally submitted my thesis. Yay for me! Only took me 5 years and I’ve actually still got one week to go as my assessment is next Wednesday morning with the exhibition opening in the evening. So if you happen to be in Canberra and near the ANU School of Art, please do come along.

Let me tell you, I’m very glad I’m about finished. Definitely looking forward to making some new work and am hatching a few deadlines to keep me going (one of the good things about studying is the deadlines – forces you to reach goals!)

And, I also got back from a weekend in fabulous Sydney where I visited for the launch of the Hijacked 2 book and exhibition. The book, I must say looks fantastic, and Mark, Ute and Markus  – as well as all their creative team – have done a fabulous job putting it together. I’m rather proud to be a part of it, I must say.

If you’re in Sydney come and check it out, otherwise it will be travelling to Canberra, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth. Oh and go buy the book, arriving on shore late this month.

I also bought Derek Henderson‘s monograph Mercy Mercer. Absolutely stunning book and I highly recommend this incredible photographer. Derek shoots 8×10″ large format in a style reminiscent of Alec Soth‘s but there’s something unique about Derek’s work. It’s imbued with a lyricism and rawness belonging to another world, (actually New Zealand). One of my favourite purchases this year.

Anyway, going forward, I’m not sure what’s going to happen with this blog. It’s actually now archived with the National Library of Australia and in perpetuity even – which is kind of nice – so even if I do hang it up, any of you interested readers out there can still access old stuff via the NLA Pandora archive. I won’t ride off into the sunset just yet, but will take my time coming back into the blogosphere. Will keep you posted no doubt…. that’s if any of you are even still there!?

Written by Lee Grant

June 15, 2010 at 8:18 pm

Overload

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Goodness, so much going on that I’ve been neglecting the blog for a while. I’ve been thinking about whether or not to continue writing this once the Masters has finished (which it will be early next year finally!)… Maybe I will continue it in a different way…. Cross that bridge when I get to it no doubt.

Anyway, in the meantime some updates:

- Didn’t make the Top 50 in Critical Mass 09 but am pretty happy nevertheless with being a finalist. Got some really interesting feedback too so am thinking more about this now and where and how I want to push my work.

- Did make it into the National Photographic Portrait Prize (NPPP) for 2010 though (finally!), so am feeling that the efforts are of course worthwhile (I don’t care who you are but knockbacks can be disappointing).

- Have had some very interesting Skype conversations with Charles Freger of POC in France this last week. He has given me some excellent feedback about my work and style in general and it’s been interesting to hear him talk about ‘attitude’ in the process of making photographs. That in my case, I need to define my own attitude and further develop consistency in my visual language. I’m thinking that as a result I am going to STOP looking at other people’s work for a while because everything you do can be a trace of someone’s else’s trace. To be a truly original voice is no easy task but I think being true to yourself might be a step in the right direction (as corny as it sounds)… ie. make pictures for yourself and no-one else.

- And lastly, I’ve almost done with the dissertation. Two weeks off to focus was great (despite being terribly distracted!) and I realised that balancing one’s art-practice with work and family and all the other pressures that go with modern life, really isn’t easy. Persistence however is the key. And I still have to write the exegesis (aka studio report)! I am so looking forward to actually graduating! Let’s hope I manage this one…..

Charles Freger (from the series Empire)

Written by Lee Grant

November 25, 2009 at 8:23 am

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