Oxford School of Photography

insights into photography

Tag Archives: Phil Coombes

London Festival of Photography – Street Photographers

Phil Coomes writing on the BBC website today features a number of street photographers who are contributing to the festival of photography.

“The London Festival of Photography returns for its second year in June comprising 18 main exhibitions with further shows, workshops and talks going on throughout the month.

Each year it also organises three photographic competitions, one of which is the Student Street Award, and this year I was invited along as one of the judges.

Our role was to select six portfolios to go forward to the final round which are to be exhibited at Orange Dot Gallery in Bloomsbury, plus each student would be offered the chance to attend a workshop with photographer Peter Dench, whose latest work England Uncensored I wrote about recently.

The submissions ranged widely in quality, style and impact making the final selection a tough one. Some entries fell in and out of the final six as the judges debated the various entries before managing to agree. I think in the end we came up with a good mix of work and nothing too obvious. Each photographer had their own vision and way of interpreting the public space through their lens.”…….MORE

One of the excellent photographers featured in Phil’s article is

Heather Shuker

“Originally a Business Studies graduate I fell in love with photography in 2003 after spending a year volunteering for a charity in Sierra Leone. Starting with short courses at Central St Martins, followed by a post-graduate degree at the same institution and a photography MA at Brighton University, all the while taking any form of commissioned photography work available, my plans to “be a photographer” began to take shape.

As a photographer, I am particularly partial to the street, an environment where things are constantly changing and every photograph is unique, a brief moment in time when all the necessary elements come together. Working on the street is extremely challenging, both technically and physically, and requires determination and confidence.

Street photography for me is all about people; I photograph “life” and “happenings”, my approach being that of the unobserved observer, exploring everyday gestures and interactions to reveal people as they truly are. My photographic work has required me to question the boundaries between what is considered public versus private – particularly my series focusing on girls in nightclub toilets, and more recently my work featured in the exhibition on the topic of public smoking.

It has been great working with Peter Dench, as I have been an admirer of his work for some time. Peter’s tips on how to achieve better street photographs have become a real help in the pursuit of “that photograph”, such as, “if it moves, follow it – get in as close as you can” – not a bad rule, considering he has only been punched once.

Peter’s tips have served as a great guide. Street photography shapes you as a photographer, giving you confidence to carry on trying new things, new angles, and pushing for ‘that’ superior image.”

Photo by Heather Shuker
Photo by Heather Shuker
Photo by Heather Shuker
It is certainly worth seeing the other photographers featured and reading the rest of Phil’s article, find them here

Dylan Coulter – photographs of cowboys

Dylan Coulter: It’s all about the concept by Phil Coombes on the BBC site

“Dylan Coulter, a photographer whose work has graced many billboards and front pages of magazines, and whose portfolio contains pictures of some of the biggest names in sport, has turned to home for his latest project and made photographs of his great aunts and uncles, the last cowboys.

The American West is a subject that has attracted many photographers and as chance would have it the birth of photography coincided with the development of what came to be known as the Wild West. The two became entwined, with photography and the cinema creating a mythological world where the figure of the cowboy became a central icon as the wilderness was “tamed”.”..…more

Here is a link to Dylan Coulter’s website