Photography A Level
Photography is the art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place, showing others the world through your eyes, it’s not about the things you see but the way you see them.
Students studying four A Levels will be expected to have a minimum of 6 GCSEs at grade 7, 8 or 9 including English Language and Mathematics at grade 6 or above. Students studying three A Levels will be expected to have a minimum of two GCSEs at grade 6 and three GCSEs at grade 4 including English Language and Mathematics at grade 4. It is not necessary to have studied Art & Design or Photography at GCSE in order to study A Level Photography. However a keen interest in the subject is crucial.
This course will provide the fundamentals of photography and you will begin using a manual film camera, processing film and printing your own black and white images with a darkroom. By studying and exploring more traditional methods of photography provides you with the foundations to create the perfect image within the lens whilst gaining a real understanding of exposure and camera controls. Traditional and alternative photography processes will be explored and experimented with whilst working alongside new media and digital photography.
You will use a sketchbook to document your studies including photoshoots captured, workshops covered, the development of ideas and experiment work. Annotation is an important part of the research and developmental process and this is also documented within your sketchbook to support your imagery. You will need to be committed, passionate and enthusiastic about photography as you are required to extend and develop work produced in class in your own time. A typical five additional hours per week is vital to expand on ideas initiated in class and techniques demonstrated to do well and fulfil the requirements of the course.
We cover a traditional method of photography, using the camera, film and darkroom techniques to new digital media techniques whilst exploring and communicating with the world around us through the lens. The different genres of photography include studio work, documentary, street photography, landscape, portrait and still-life photography to name a few, and you will be introduced to these different aspects of photography through workshops and assignments whilst on the course.
Component one: Personal Investigation (60% of final grade) throughout year one and to December of year two. Component two: Externally Set Assignment (40% of final grade) runs from February to May of the second year. Both components are internally assessed and externally moderated. You will also present a portfolio and an exhibition of your work covering both components which is internally assessed and externally moderated.
Enrichment and Work Experience
There is an opportunity to complete a one week work placement in the summer term. Throughout the academic year there will be several day trips to galleries, artist studios and city visits to gather and practise your observation recording techniques. Some will be enriching, but for those that are compulsory, travel costs will be met by the College. Workshops are run every Wednesday afternoon and they cover all areas of art & design to further develop your creative making skills and broaden your knowledge.
To support your studies, you will be required to purchase relevant materials as outlined: Kit £21.70 and includes: lrg sq. skbk, 25 sheets kentmere photo paper, 2 x 10x8 photo paper, double sided tape, masking tape, A3 plastic portfolio, glue stick, biro, 4 x acetates
Links with other subjects:
Photography links well with English, Graphic Design, Fine Art, Media and Film Studies.
Future Career Opportunities
• Fashion photography & styling
• Editorial photography
• Studio photographer and manager
• Travel photographer
• Freelance photographer
Why Study at BSFC?
Throughout your time here at College you will build up an innovative and exciting portfolio of work which will support you in studying at a higher level or progressing onto a university course. The specialist studio and photographic equipment will support your personal progress.