As an explorer Liverpool was one of the greatest cities to get to know. In fact Liverpool is actually one of the most important cities in the world. From a port that connected England to the world and enabled trading worldwide, to the range of canals that allowed for direct access by boast from mainland England to Liverpool water front; being of major importance to the trade in England and part responsible for the success of the Industrial development. The city of Liverpool has been founded by King John in the early 1200’s. The first commercial wet docks were in the early 1700’s. Liverpool docks were key in the slave trade and attracted many different cultures and trade from all corners of the earth. Its richness contributed to the built of majestic buildings that speak of heritage, history and wealth which lasted many years. Only in the last century did Liverpool see a financial decline, but also a repurpose of the use of space and buildings drawing people back in for different purposes and enriching in a different aspect.
With modern technologies and a progress on the industrialization and worldwide trade the wet docks and the old systems did not function any more. Today the waterfront has been completely redeveloped and offers a huge range of museums, galleries, restaurants, bars, cafes, hotels and more. Many of its sites and buildings are part of the UNESCO World Heritage. Liverpool’s waterfront has also the greatest collection of Grade I listed buildings in England. It has reshaped the view of the waterfront and is a very popular destination for both local residents and tourists from all ages and interests. From young people skating along the waterfront, to opportunities for dining and enjoying the views, walks and museums. Thinking of the public space as a drawing room of society, Liverpool’s waterfront is indeed a majestic and grand living space. Each view is a window to a past that meets the present; each sculpture or statue celebrating key personalities, like photo frames of loved ones in a mantel piece of around the drawing room. Each building and area could form a project in itself. Liverpool’s water front could certainly form an incredible body of work completely self-sufficient. I was only able to scratch the surface.
For this shoot I worked with two hand held cameras. I used the wide angle lens on my canon 60D, deciding to compromise on the size of the sensor (¾ sensor instead of a full frame), instead of having to crop images later due to harsh vignetting. On my Canon 6D I used the 128-135mm lens allowing for details and bending the rules of composition and exploring different viewpoints. On the Canon 60D I had a level cube and used it to balance as best as possible straight images without the use of a tripod. Although I did carry the tripod with me I was weary of the number of people around me and I could move easier and swifter only having the two camera bodies on me, with any remaining equipment secured in my backpack.
This was one of the biggest shoots of this project and the most challenging for editing down the selected images, not being able to keep to the best 3 or 4. I also wanted to have them printed to physically see them and be able to choose from there an image to be part of the final body of work.
On my physical learning journal I have individual notes on each image and the post-processing edit.
The nest step from here is to revisit the full body of work produced so far, check if anything needs re-shooting and make the final prints and selection of images for the ‘Secret of Spaces’ body of work.
Studio Practices 3B
Photography BA Hons – Year 3
Bradford College / Leeds Beckett