All posts filed under: Students

Kid criminals: tagged, tracked and cast off by society

“My dad left us when I was four or five, and I’ve been estranged from him ever since. Things were rough for my mum trying to raise two boys on her own,” says 28-year-old Zora Murff, whose series Corrections is informed in no small part by his experiences growing up disenfranchised, with a family diminished by low income, lack of opportunity and alcohol abuse. Born and raised in Des Moines, where one in three children live below the poverty line, Zora could easily have become a write-off. His mother was forced to take jobs out of town at weekends to provide for her two boys, often leaving them unsupervised for many hours. “My brother and I were very close when we were young, and I spent a lot of time following him around, until he got to the age where it wasn’t cool to have your little brother tagging along any more. When that happened, I had to learn to be alone – I started to read a lot and draw.” As Zora got older – with …


BJP #7837: Look and Learn

What does the perfect art college look like? The Ecole cantonale d’art de Lausanne in Switzerland, profiled in our July issue (now on sale at newsagents in the UK and selected countries abroad, or via iTunes for our iPad edition, or directly from The BJP Shop), must come pretty close, with its balance of the vocational, the conceptual and a dash of the downright weird. Not to mention first-class facilities housed in a state-of-the-art building near Lake Geneva, sensibly priced course fees (€800 per term), and a workshop programme made up of visiting lectures by some of the world’s leading photographers, including Thomas Mailaender’s now legendary woodland survival course. If that all sounds a little different to your own art college experience, then how about this for a schedule: “I think something very specific about ECAL is that we are very pragmatic – we start at 8am in the morning and we finish quite late,” says Milo Keller, the photography course leader since 2012. “The students have to work really, really hard – we don’t …


The female derobed: Neola McDavid’s untainted nudes

“Trust is very important when you ask someone to take their clothes off so you can photograph them nude,” says Neola Loretta McDavid, who will soon graduate from the University of Roehampton with a BA Honours in Photography. “Your subjects need to have confidence in you as a photographer, and they need to feel comfortable in themselves.” McDavid’s series of nude portraits, Denudate 2015, exudes strength – stripped back, it presents women in a state of undress, stoic in their own personal space, the only props being the intimate objects in their homes. Her series, like the meaning of the title itself, bares all – it strips women of the labels imposed upon them by society and returns them to their natural state, as “supreme beings” – equal to men, neither subordinate nor superior. “The women in my portraits signify empowerment. They are not obstructed by the mores of society or media in the way that influences how women are portrayed today. The women aren’t sexualised, nor are their poses meant to be suggestive. I’m not using the female …


Hometown America: Chris Gravett’s undiscovered Arkansas

“I Googled myself, as you do, and accidently added an ‘e’ to the end of my name,” says 64-year-old recent graduate Chris Gravett. “The city of Gravette in northwest Arkansas came up. Wikipedia says it has a population of 2300 – 90% white, with 23 churches, in an area of four square miles. I thought it was such a bizarre demographic I wanted to know more.” And so began the making of Gravette The Heart of Hometown America, which is currently on exhibit at the Free Range Graduate Art and Design Show at The Old Truman Brewery in east London – a summer season of shows celebrating up-and-coming graduate talent in the fields of art, design, fashion, photography and architecture. Chris researched further and discovered that the city of Gravette was founded by a man named Ellis Tillman Gravett – without the ‘e’ – in 1893. A further ancestral search uncovered that Ellis Tillman was British, a settler originally from Steyling in Sussex, and that their ancestral lines cross in the early 16th century. Inspired …


Naoto Akimoto lived in a homeless shelter in poverty stricken Japan

Naoto Akimoto is featured as part of a BJP partnership with Magnum Photos after he came top-of-the-class in a Tokyo workshop with Bruce Gilden. Gilden hosted one of three workshops in collaboration with The Nippon Photography Institute in Shibuya, Tokyo. costing 150,000 yen (£843.71) for each participant, where he provided mentoring to develop students’ storytelling through daily shoots; with the aim of gathering a project by the end of the week. Gilden selected the final portfolio of Akimoto as the best – he won a Fujifilm camera, the Fuji X100T. “Initially Naoto showed me quite pedestrian documentary photographs that I think he took at a homeless shelter in Yokohama,” says Gilden. “I told him that I thought he had to get much closer. When he showed up two days later with new images from the same place, the class and I were astounded. “He had done a masterful job: he was much closer and had exposed the men’s souls. This, combined with his hard work and dedication – he was spending all night at the shelter – make quite …


Attention all photography graduates: BJP is looking for the cream of this year's crop to feature in the projects section of our summer issues. Picture shows our August 2014 issue, featuring the work of Nottingham Trent graduate Ben Swanson (left) and Middlesex graduate Johanna Churchill (right)

Class of 2015: get your work in a special print issue of BJP

If you think you’ve got what it takes to be featured in a forthcoming special issue of BJP, and you are graduating from a higher education photography course in the UK or Ireland this summer, we want to see your work. BJP prides itself on spotting new talent, each year giving a platform to emerging photographers graduating from colleges and universities across the UK and Ireland to showcase their work with their peers and photo industry VIPs. The best we see will feature in print in our Projects section in our June, July and August summer editions, and a further number given global exposure across our online and social media platforms, reaching more than half a million people worldwide. To be considered, simply send a link to your final year work, or attach a maximum of eight low res JPEGs totalling no more than 5MB, to the editor at It is vital that you write into the subject line of the email, ‘Class of 2015’, and that you graduating this summer from a recognised …


BJP Breakthrough Awards – Call for Entries


British Journal of Photography is proud to announce our inaugural BJP Breakthrough Awards, a prestigious photography award singularly capable of connecting the next generation of photographers with the established photography industry. We are inviting photographers on undergraduate courses, and within five years of graduating (including current MA students), to submit work to be judged by an influential panel of leading industry professionals. Photographs can be captured in any format – film, digital or mobile – and can be of any style or genre. The competition is open to students and graduates from around the world. In partnership with Olympus, Free Range and theprintspace, winners will have their work exhibited at British Journal of Photography’s dedicated pop-up exhibition space in Shoreditch, East London’s creative hub. The four category winners will have their work presented by our editorial team at an exclusive launch event, and gain international exposure through our award-winning online and print channels. DEADLINE FOR ENTRIES: 12 noon (GMT) on Friday 8th May 2015. For more details go to our dedicated BJP Breakthrough website. 


BJP Staff